In the nineteen-eighties, integration into French society was still a rocky path for the children of North African immigrants. Throughout France, many young people seemed to be rediscovering their Islamic identity. This religious revival was also beginning to attract a certain number of non-Muslims.
Those who renounced Islam did so quietly. It was those who trumpeted their allegiance to Islam who attracted media attention. When schools restarted in September 1989, three young girls were suspended from their high school in Creil for refusing to take off their headscarfs inside the school building. So began the affair of the veil.
The matter of the veil continues to be contentious until today. In April 2011, France became the first European country to enforce a ban of the face veil in public, just one of the many issues that emphasise the schism that remains between the different faces of French society.