The 2011 law banned concealment of the face in public space, at a time when fewer than 2,000 women wore the niqab in France. But they remain at the heart of a lively debate on the place of Islam in French society. How to survey these women with the rigor and empathy necessary for the social sciences? Two researchers try to do it. Agnès De Féo presents the results of ten years in the field, interviewing and filming more than a hundred “niqabees”. Agnès Villechaise discusses them from a broader perspective, exploring the renewal of the relationship with religion among Muslims and Muslims in France in their diversity and complexity.
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