BANLIYÖ - BANLIEUE  | 2004 | Turkish, French | 29 min | DVCam


Surville is a suburban neighbourhood of Paris, like the many neighbourhoods where the riots took place in November 2005. With its population of mainly Turkish and Arab origin, Surville is also probably a “brick in the wall” of stereotypes about immigration, ghettos and Islam in France and in Europe in general. But what do these immigrants and daughters and sons of immigrants, who live there, think about this ? Instead of relaying the media discourse of fear and desolation, this documentary tries to give a voice to those who are not always heard. Immigrants and children of immigrants, people like Sedat, Celal and Derya, together with their families and their friends, talk about their everyday life, their arrival in France, they talk about school, about work and the hardships of “integration”. They talk about the difficulty of living between a country sometimes imagined, Turkey, and an often hostile and incomprehensive France. They talk about the mosque and the Turkish Cultural Center. But how to explain the “imported” brooms and brides ? How to explain the dead, who have to be repatriated because of the absence of a Muslim cemetery ? How to explain the will the to abandon traditions without losing an identity based on the practice of Islam and on the preservation of the language of the home country ? This film does not provide answers, but attempts at following those questions of the thin line that separated integration, recognition, frustration, success, violence and return.