The Algerian wife or “l’amour n’a pas d’age”
Keywords:male migration, North Africa, France, love, romance
Young male immigrants from North Africa come to France as much to defy a sense of globally structured exclusion as to escape the effects of other geopolitical stresses. While most anthropological work on Islam and North African youth in France documents a return to conservative Islam, this letter discusses another response to this same experience by illegal North African immigrants living in France. The response described here is one of humour, romance, and a continued desire to join the West rather than a rejection or challenge to French society. This letter provides ethnographic data on the phenomenon described above and so gives a view from the street of how romance may be one of the most important preoccupations of the clandestine male.
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