Researched Exploratory Essay

Here is where I will introduce the goals through the Proposal done for the EE.

Kamel Williams

March 24, 2020


France is one of the oldest and most popular countries in the continent of Europe. With its vast colonial stretch, many different areas of the world were once colonies of France, most notably for the purpose of this essay, The Maghreb. The Maghreb refers to the francophone Arabic speaking areas of North Africa that were once under French colonial authority. These countries include Morocco, Tunisia and Algeria, which also happen to be the areas from which the majority of immigration to France occur from since the 1960s. This essay focuses on the islamophobia, marginalization and racism faced by these immigrants and their children. Despite their legal french citizenship achieved by  either birth or naturalization, the exceptionalist French Society does not allow for them to be regarded as french, denying them cultural citizenship. I will explore how the legal colorblindness of a society affects those living in it.

Rhetorical Precis of Sources

  1. Chicana femenist writer, Gloria Anzaldua, in her semi-autobiographical book,Borderlands/La Frontera: The New Mestiza, published in 1987, addresses the topic of mexican american identity and argues that her mixed cultural upbringings allow her to form her own vision of her identity. She supports this claim by providing personal anecdotes as well as historical data. Anzaldua’s purpose is to provide her readers the reason why the Mexican American Chicano language evolved the way it did in order to show the treatment and outlook of different groups give to people of Chicano descent. She adopts a passionate tone for her audience, the readers of Mother Tongue and others interested in the topic of Chicano SelfIdentity.
  1. In her narrative, Mother Tongue, american writer Amy Tan asserts that different types of english have been adapted by immigrants due to their adjustment to american culture by addressing the belief of what is considered standard english  and what is seen as the lingua franca of immigrants, broken english.    By supplying the reader with information about  her mother’s  and  her very own experiences,Tan builds her claims about  how the type of english spoken by immigrants can cause them to be looked down on. Amy Tan wishes to convey to readers the importance of being mindful of the hurdles faced by those who don’t speak the standard english  in order to change the way in which broken english is associated with a certain type of people with a certain level of education.The author’s audience likely consists of those interested in language and association to intelligence as is evident through her references to her mother and how she would be perceived by those around her.
  1. In the narrative, Citizen Outsider: Children of North African Immigrants by author Dr. Jean Beaman, Assitant Professor in Sociology, asserts that cultural exceptionalism is alive and well in France and suggests that the belief of what it takes to be French is dependent on racist and xenophobic ideals. She backs up this claim by doing the following: first, she goes to France and interviews 45 second generation magribean immigrants specifically in areas in Paris and it’s roundabouts next she compare the ideas of politics and republicanism and feelings of nationalism to France of her interviewees to that of an average French citizen. Beaman appears to write in hopes of finding the root of  the marginalization due to racial ethnic origin in order to bring to light the racist andxenophobic idea of citizenship and french exceptionalism. Because of the author’s passionate and informative tone, it seems as if she writes for both a french and international audience.
  1. Writing for well known Newspaper,The New York Times, Craig S Smith, in his article, “French Born Arabs, Perpetually foreign, Grow Bitter,” , published December 26, 2003, addresses the topic of racism and marginalization of Arabs, arguing that they have been alienated from French society due to their foreignness. He supports this claim by providing historical context, quoting political authority and interviewing people to hear their views on the situation. Smith’s purpose is to spread awareness of the issue in order to speed up a change in the way these people are marginalized and treated. He adopts a formal and informative tone for his audience, the readers of the article and others interested in the topic of immigration.


In this essay, I plan to use all four of my chosen sources to provide as much accurate information to my readers surrounding my topic. The first source I will be talking on is a course text. Using the narrative written by Amy Tan, I will connect with the way in which Tan’s mother used an English that was less than traditional standard American English to the French spoken by Maghreb immigrants and their children and how it is viewed by the typical French public.

The second and one of the most central sources I will be focusing mainly on is another course text by the name of Borderlands written by Gloria Anzaldua. I will compare the feeling expressed by the author throughout the book of feeling like she was not fully accepted by her cultural Mexican community and feeling like a foreigner in her native country to the similar feeling Maghrebian immigrants feel in their native France and the impacts it has on their perception of their identity.

The third source is from the New York Times. This is the oldest source but it’s antiquity is relevant to its purpose in my essay. This essay is from 2003 and will show how little things have changed in terms of outlook and marginalization of these Maghrebean communities. The fourth and  final source I will be using is Jean Beaman’s Citizen Outsider: Children of North African Immigrants in France. This is the most essential text to my essay as it provides statistical data and insight from a large group of people of Maghrebean descent.

Work Cited

  1. Beaman, Jean. Citizen Outsider Children of North African Immigrants in France. University of California Press, 2017.
  2. Smith, Craig S. “French-Born Arabs, Perpetually Foreign, Grow Bitter.” 26 Dec. 2003, https://www.nytimes.com/2003/12/26/world/french-born-arabs-perpetually-foreign-grow-bitter.html.
  3. Anzaldúa Gloria. Borderlands -: La Frontera. Aunt Lute Books, 2007.
  4. Tan, Amy. “Mother Tongue.” [Threepenny Review 1990; 1989.] The McGraw-Hill Reader: Issues across the Disciplines. Ed. Gilbert H. Muller. 11th ed. Boston: McGraw-Hill , 2011. 76-81. Print.