Television

The French want more ethnic diversity on TV

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MUMBAI: In a poll taken following the recent ethnic riots throughout France, most of the French public say that they would like to see greater ethnic diversity on television.

The poll was released a few days ago just as French President Jacques Chirac was preparing to meet with television executives.Media reports indicate that Chirac and network executives will discuss showing content that better reflect the country's racial composition.

According to the survey, which was conducted by the CSA research firm for the daily newspaper Le Parisien 79 per cent of respondents agreed with Chirac's statement stating "The media must better reflect the French reality of today. 18 per cent disagreed and three per cent expressed no opinion. The polled questioned 957 people.

France, with a larger proportion of non-European minorities than any of its neighbors, has been in denial of the increasingly multiethnic makeup of its society for decades. The disparity between the country's monochromatic image of itself and the multicolored reality frustrates young citizens from non-European immigrant backgrounds and has added to their sense of alienation.

 

This was expressed most graphically in the arson that swept the country for nearly three weeks.Observers have attributed the civil unrest to disaffected youths of North and West African origin, who have difficulty finding employment and fitting into French society.

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