Framing and Claiming "Gender Equality": A Multi-level Analysis of the French Civic Integration Program. By: Onasch, Elizabeth. Gender & Society. Jun2020, Vol. 34 Issue 3, p496-518. 23p.

The recent construction of “gender equality” as a defining value of European societies has shaped the policy goals of immigrant integration programs. This focus on “gender equality” may function, paradoxically, to exclude immigrants, if immigrant integration policies rely on stereotypical representations of immigrants and fail to acknowledge the multiple, intersecting forms of inequality that immigrant women face. This article contributes to the critical scholarship on the role of “gender equality” in the field of immigrant integration policy by examining the framing of this concept in the policy documents and implementation of the French civic integration program. Using ethnographic observations and field interviews, I illustrate how frontline workers, many of whom were women of immigrant origin, interacted with participants to frame “gender equality” in exclusionary and inclusionary ways, and how “gender equality” functioned as a racial boundary within the program. The tensions in the discourses of frontline workers mirrored those of the political context in which the policy developed; they were constrained by a difference-blind ideology of French republicanism as they insisted on “gender equality” as the pathway to belonging in France.