Religion, Rule, and Legal Identity in French Algeria

Top Pick April 25, 2016 Boston Free 0
(Photo: Library of Congress)
(Photo: Library of Congress)

An official policy of religious toleration shaped the terms of legal identity and marginality in Algeria under French colonial rule. Formation of a colonial consistory, or governing body, for Algerian Jews and for European Christian settlers enabled each community to participate in elections. After the Revolution of 1848, French officials sought to create a consistory for Algerian Muslims. Yet, such a Muslim governing body never emerged. Instead, Dr. Schley will argue, religion, and Islam in particular, became the basis for defining Muslims’ legal identity and marginality in French colonial Algeria—the consequences of which still resonate over a century later. This forum is also the first of the workshop series Jews, Muslims, Christians and the Struggle for Religious Identity in Modern Mediterranean Societies. All workshops in this series involve discussion of a pre-circulated paper. The paper can be requested as early as a week before the scheduled event. Requests should be emailed to Theresa Cooney at

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Fact Sheet
Monday, April 25, 2016, 2:00 pm - 4:00 pm
Elie Wiesel Center for Judaic Studies
147 Bay State Road
Boston, MA 02215

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