Date of Award

Spring 2021

Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts


LACS: French Studies

First Advisor

Blase Provitola


This thesis explores the politically charged topic of the representations of Algerian women in contemporary Franco-Algerian cinema. Yamina Benguigui’s Inch’allah Dimanche and Nadir Moknèche’s Viva Laldjérie were both released in the early 2000s, in the midst of debates around feminism, secularism (or laïcité) and the so-called Islamic “veil.” At a time when some white French feminists were speaking on behalf of Algerian women, claiming they were “oppressed” while glorifying French culture, these films highlight a plurality of Algerian women’s experiences in a postcolonial context. Inch’allah Dimanche depicts women’s immigration during France’s policy of regroupement familial in the early 1970s, whereas Viva Laldjérie takes place in Algeria in the wake of the “Black decade” and the Algerian Civil War. This project first explores how Benguigui and Moknèche, both of whom are French of Algerian descent, assert their “Frenchness” in their films by implementing Western norms and aesthetics while critiquing Algerian traditions through strong female characters. Then, the focus shifts to explore political debates in France during the early 2000s and looks at how each of these films also looks critically at certain forms of Western feminism. Ultimately, while these directors criticize Algerian traditions and patriarchy, they also provide a critique of white feminists’ perceptions of the Algerian woman’s situation.


Senior thesis completed at Trinity College, Hartford CT for the degree of Bachelor of Arts in French Studies.