A united France looks more than ever like a divided one
Published 16/01/2016 | 02:30
The glossy campaign adorns billboards and metro stations across Marseille, France's second largest city and one of its most diverse. My baguette from a local boulangerie even came wrapped in paper displaying the campaign logo this week.
'For 2016, let us be united', it reads grandly above a map of France composed of scores of images of individual people, supposedly French citizens.
A closer look reveals that this purported representation of France united is a rather homogenous one. There are few faces that are not white, for example, and none that explicitly show a French Muslim - say a woman wearing the hijab or headscarf - despite France being home to Europe's largest Muslim population, many of whom live in this port city shaped by generations of immigration. The message is hardly one that conveys a France confidently united in difference.