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Tietze, Nicola

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Der Standard - Austria | 29/11/2007

Laicism and unrest in France

Talking to Sonja Fercher, Austrian political scientist Nicola Tietze puts forward the thesis that the French people's secular image of themselves has escalated the conflict in the suburbs: "I believe the grand delusion of the French state is that it promised its citizens equal socio-economic opportunities in exchange for laicism. But the state hasn't been able to keep this promise for a long time. ... This is what I see as French society's main problem, because there is currently a counter-reaction among young Muslims who declare themselves Muslim precisely because they don't have the same opportunities. Much of the rioting in autumn 2005 had to do with the fact that the Republican promise was not kept."

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