Paris deputy mayor prompts fury: ‘Whites must keep quiet when racism is discussed’


Audrey Pulvar, Paris's deputy mayor has prompted new fury by calling to ban white people from discussions of racism

Audrey Pulvar, Paris’s deputy mayor has prompted new fury by calling to ban white people from discussions of racism

Paris’s deputy mayor has prompted new fury by calling to ban white people from discussions of racism.  

Left-wing deputy mayor Audrey Pulvar, 49, said white people should ‘be asked to keep quiet and be silent spectators’ during discussions around racism attended by black and ethnic minority people.  

She explained: ‘People who suffer discrimination for the same reasons and in the same way feel the need to meet among themselves to discuss it’.  

Pulvar’s comments have re-sparked concerns over the rise of American woke culture in the French state.  

A collection of politicians, prominent intellectuals, and academics argued last month that France was being contaminated by American ideas on race, gender, and post-colonialism, and that they were undermining French society.       

The group have seen Pulvar’s comment as proof French society is being eroded by American ideals. 

The same faction have assumed the term ‘Islamo-leftism’ as a buzzword for supposed progressive support for Islamist radicals on the basis they have faced discrimination, The Times reports. 

A collection of politicians, prominent intellectuals, and academics argued last month that France was being contaminated by American ideas on race, gender, and post-colonialism, and that they were undermining French society

A collection of politicians, prominent intellectuals, and academics argued last month that France was being contaminated by American ideas on race, gender, and post-colonialism, and that they were undermining French society

A collection of politicians, prominent intellectuals, and academics argued last month that France was being contaminated by American ideas on race, gender, and post-colonialism, and that they were undermining French society.

Pulvar's comments have sparked concerns over the rise of American woke culture in the country, which conservatives say is undermining French society

Pulvar's comments have sparked concerns over the rise of American woke culture in the country, which conservatives say is undermining French society

Pulvar’s comments have sparked concerns over the rise of American woke culture in the country, which conservatives say is undermining French society

Former socialist Prime Minister Manuel Valls said Pulvar’s comments betrayed French values in an interview on Europe 1 Radio.  

He said: ‘This rhetoric, always justifying the victim, leads to disaster… Do you have to be Jewish to talk about antisemitism?’  

The row, which has highlighted divisions in French politics, was prolonged when President Emmanuel Macron waded into the debate in a speech on the ‘Fight against Separatism’ in October.

Macron warned against leaving ‘the intellectual debate to others’ as he cautioned over the rise of ‘social science theories’ imported from the US.  

Macron also claimed the increasing prevalence of American woke culture in France was a threat to national unity.  

The French President had previously mostly remained silent on the matter, with the official government line being dismissive of race and systemic racism.  

The debate has unearthed the schisms within French politics – most prominently between traditional Socialists and Greens and radicals, who have openly adopted American identity politics. 

Protesters are carrying signs during a demonstration against racism and police brutality at Republique Square in Paris in June

Protesters are carrying signs during a demonstration against racism and police brutality at Republique Square in Paris in June

Protesters are carrying signs during a demonstration against racism and police brutality at Republique Square in Paris in June

A Black Lives Matter protest in Paris in June after the death of George Floyd. Academics have criticised the protests

A Black Lives Matter protest in Paris in June after the death of George Floyd. Academics have criticised the protests

A Black Lives Matter protest in Paris in June after the death of George Floyd. Academics have criticised the protests

The row follows tension over protests against police violence last summer in France, sparked by the death in police custody of George Floyd. 

The wave of protests saw activists take to the streets and students pressure institution to disinvite well-known speakers.  

The mid-June protests in Paris were organised under the banner ‘Justice for Adama’, after Adama Traoré, a 24-year-old black man who died in French police custody in 2016.

Family and friends said he died of asphyxiation, in the manner of George Floyd, the American said to have been murdered by police in Minneapolis, Minnesota,in May 2020. 

Among the protesters was Assa Traoré, Adama’s sister, who called on people to ‘denounce social, racial, and police violence’.

Ms Traoré said: ‘What’s happening in the United States is happening in France. Our brothers are dying.’ 

Mr Traore had run away from a police check in Beaumont-sur-Oise, a town north of Paris, and hours later died at a nearby police station.

The vague circumstances of the incident have led to allegations of a state cover-up, and his family have been fighting for justice ever since. 

Academics criticised the protests in France. 

In February, social scientists Stéphane Beaud and Gérard Noiriel published a book in which they claimed that race is a ‘bulldozer’ that destroys other subjects. 

The pair said they believe race should not be studied as an academic subject in France, as the secular government does not recognise it. 



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