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Documentary Preview - 'The Headmaster and The Headscarves'

Documentary film on France's controversial law to ban religious symbols from schools.

Screening– ‘The Headmaster and the Headscarves’
Monday 28th February – 7.30pm
Followed by a Q&A with Elizabeth Jones, film director
Film Duration – 59 minutes

France’s controversial law banning religious symbols from school has provoked outrage from its 5 million strong muslim community.  The Headmaster and the Headscarves follows a group of veiled girls at a Paris school who decide to resist the new law in defiance of the headmaster.  At stake for the girls is their all-vital school leaving exams – refusing to remove their headscarves could mean expulsion.  A few of the staff are supportive, fearing that the headscarf ban is a form of discrimination against north african pupils.  But the majority of teachers believe school should be a bastion against a rising tide of islamic fundamentalism. 

The film documents how a group of shy teenage girls, most who’d never met before, found themselves carrying out their first ever political act against a backdrop of media hysteria and rising ethnic tension. The girls bear witness to the fears and hopes of a community of French citizens, hidden away on housing estates, who are usually invisible to the French media.  Events take a dramatic turn after Iraqi terrorists kidnap two French journalists and demand the repeal of the law banning headscarves.

‘The Headmaster and the Headscarves” will be broadcast for the first time on BBC2’s This World series on March 29th 2005.

Directed and filmed by Elizabeth Jones
Associate Producer – Delphine Jaudeau
Researcher  - Alice Bhandhukravi
Film Editor – Catherine Arend
Executive Producer – Alison Rooper
In Focus Productions for This World


Director Elizabeth Jones | talks | www


Date and Time:

28 February 2005 at 7:30 pm


1 hour 30 minutes



The Frontline Club
13 Norfolk Place
W2 1QJ
020 7479 8950

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Available from:

Seats are limited please RSVP to Elsa Weill, elsa.weill@thefrontlineclub.com / 020 7479 8950

Additional Information:

Bookings in advance, payment for tickets reserved is made on the night of the event. Arrival from 7pm for 7:30 start. Monday night screenings are a regular feature at The Frontline Club. Visit our website for more information.

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