Islamic Headscarf Controversy in France

The Role of Culture as Explanatory Framework

  • Aamer Raza Assistant Professor, Department of Political Science, University of Peshawar
  • Rashid Ahmad Professor, Shaykh Zayed Islamic Center, University of Peshawar
Keywords: France, Secularism, Headscarf Ban, Muslim Identity, Culture and Conflict


The controversy regarding the French ban on wearing of Islamic scarf in Public spaces has divided the French public for at least two decades. This paper uses culture as an explanatory framework to underscore that the issue of the headscarf has assumed greater significance because it has come to be viewed as a symbol of French Muslim identity. Subsequently, Muslim groups view the exclusion of the scarf from public spaces as exclusion of Muslim identity as part of French social fabric. The paper argues that culture which is the source of the issue also has the potential to resolve the dispute.

Author Biography

Rashid Ahmad, Professor, Shaykh Zayed Islamic Center, University of Peshawar

Dr. Rashid Ahmad is a Professor at the Shaykh Zayed Islamic Center, Peshawar.

How to Cite
Raza, A. and Ahmad, R. 2020. Islamic Headscarf Controversy in France. Al-Idah . 38, - 1 (Jun. 2020), 35 - 45. DOI: