by Jean Beaman, author of Citizen Outsider: Children of North African Immigrants in France
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In my new book, Citizen Outsider: Children of North African Immigrants in France, I write about many different perspectives—those of my respondents, middle-class children of North African immigrants in France, and also my own—as a Black American sociologist. I discuss how children of North African immigrants in France—and racial and ethnic minorities in France, more generally—are still kept on the margins of French society because of their racial and ethnic origin. They are not seen as full citizens, or as I put it, they are denied cultural citizenship to be accepted by others as French as any other person. To do this research, I lived in Paris for various periods. When I told people I interacted with in France that I was writing a book based on this research, many immediately assumed that my book would be inaccessible since I was working with a United States based publisher and therefore purchase and shipping costs might be prohibitive. I was happy to inform them that while hard copies can still be purchased, my book would be accessible via open access. Even though my book was just recently published, I have already heard from people in France and other countries who have been able to download my book—either by chapters or in its entirety. In my work, I talk with people both throughout and outside of the United States and it is therefore very beneficial for people to be able to immediately access my work—without delay. Since I am a non-French person researching and writing about France, it is extremely fruitful for me to be able to immediately engage and dialogue with French people about my book and the questions it raises.