Yamina Benguigui

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Yamina Benguigui
Yamina Benguigui.jpg
Yamina Benguigui in 2009
Yamina Zora Belaïdi[1]

(1955-04-09) 9 April 1955 (age 64)
Occupationfilm director and politician

Yamina Benguigui (born in Lille on 9 April 1955)[2] is a French film director and politician of Algerian descent. She is known for her films on gender issues in the North African (both Berbers and Arabs) immigrant community in France.[3] Through her films, Benguigui gave a voice to many from the Maghrebi population in France.


Benguigui's parents were Algerian and immigrated to France from Algeria in the early 1950s.[4] She never discovered why her parents decided to leave Algeria, saying the subject was considered taboo.[5] Born in Lille, Benguigui was the eldest daughter of six children and spent her childhood in northern France.[6] Describing herself as a quiet child who grew up in the Islamic tradition, Benguigui was only 13 years old when she first decided to become a filmmaker.[6]

Her father was a political leader in the Algerian National Movement, and was jailed in France for three years as a political prisoner (she has also stated that he was jailed on two separate occasions, and that her whole family was once under house arrest).[3][6] Because he did not support her in her chosen profession, Benguigui broke off contact with him early on, only to reconnect with him in late 2001.[3] After she left the family her mother divorced her father as well.[6] Yamina Benguigui married a Jewish pied-noir and has two daughters.[6]


Earning her baccalaureate and going on to study at film school, Benguigui then collaborated with French director Jean-Daniel Pollet.[6] Later Benguigui founded "Bandit Productions" with director Rachid Bouchareb.[7] While her work consisted of a feature film and short films, Benguigui's widely known for her documentaries which were mainly released in the 90's.[8] She uses her films as a tool to build bridges between France's majority and minoritized groups, by bringing to light social issues such as challenges immigrants face.[9] However, it is important to note, Benguigui did not represent all voices and through the film edits and framing of interviews, she ignored certain voices that did not benefit the message her films were sending.[8]

Benguigui released In 1994 her documentary Femmes d'Islam was broadcast on France 2,[10] but subsequently she decided that she would prefer to examine the immigrant experience in France rather than life in Algeria.[6]

Her next documentary, Mémoires d'immigrés, l'héritage maghrébin, cost 50 million francs and was the result of 350 interviews conducted with immigrants across France. After a two-year period of preparation and another nine months of editing it was first shown in May 1997 on Canal+. Receiving positive reviews from critics, it was rebroadcast the following month and brought to theaters the following January.[10]

In 2001, Benguigui produced Inch’Allah dimanche, which takes a closer look at the role gender takes within the space of a home, specifically a young women, Zouina and her family.[11] Previous films, made by men, depict Algerian women as secondary characters, and Benguigui uses her film as a platform where these women can be depicted as multifaceted and Zouina is able to negotiate her identity outside of the strict rules set by her husband.[12]

As of February 2008 Benguigui was working on a film entitled Le paradis, c'est complet!, starring Isabelle Adjani.[13][14]

In the French municipal elections of March 2008 Benguigui was elected to represent the 20th arrondissement of Paris on the Paris city council, where she concerned herself in particular with human rights and the fight against discrimination.[15] She is associated with the Socialist Party.[16]

On 16 May 2012 President François Hollande of France appointed her to the post of Junior Minister for French Nationals Abroad and Relations with La Francophonie (French-speaking countries worldwide) at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.[17]

On 21 June 2012 Yamina Benguigui was confirmed as Minister for la Francophonie in the French Government.[18] On 30 June 2012 the French President Francois Hollande asked Yamina Benguigui to succeed to Former French Prime Minister Jean Pierre Raffarin as his authorized representative for the OIF [19]



Mémoires d'immigrés, l'héritage maghrébin[edit]

Inch'Allah Dimanche[edit]



  1. ^ a b Décret du 7 mai 2007 portant promotion et nomination à l'Ordre national du mérite, Journal officiel de la République française n°107, 8 mai 2007, p. 8115, texte n°2 Système NOR [fr] PREX0710152D, sur Légifrance.
  2. ^ based on birth certificate, birth time 7 am, born as Yamina Zora Belaïdi
  3. ^ a b c Alexander, Livia (May 2002). "French-Algerian: A Story of Immigrants and Identity". SATYA. Archived from the original on December 31, 2006. Retrieved 2008-04-11.
  4. ^ Kerviel, Sylvie (1999-06-21). "Au nom des immigrés; YAMINA BENGUIGUI" (in French). Le Monde.
  5. ^ "Portraits d'immigrés" (in French). Entre-Gens. Retrieved 2008-04-11.
  6. ^ a b c d e f g h Dupont, Joan (1998-03-31). "Seeking an Identity in 'the Immigrant's Silence'". International Herald Tribune. Archived from the original on November 25, 2006. Retrieved 2008-04-11.
  7. ^ Miadi, Fadwa (2006-01-29). "Yamina Benguigui: Cinéaste franco-algérienne" (in French). Jeune Afrique. Retrieved 2008-04-12.
  8. ^ a b Bourget, Carine (2016). "Claiming integration, performing exclusion: Yamina Benguigui's documentaries". French Cultural Studies. 27 (2): 178–189. doi:10.1177/0957155815616591.
  9. ^ Kealhofer, Leslie (2011). "Veiled Voices in the Films of Yamina Benguigui". Studies in French Cinema. 11 (3): 207–221. doi:10.1386/sfc.11.3.207_1.
  10. ^ a b c d Sylvie Durmelat, "Transmission and Mourning in Mémoires d'immigrés: l'héritage maghrébin: Yamina Benguigui as 'Memory Entrepreneuse,'" in Women, Immigration and Identities in France, ed. Jane Freedman and Carrie Tarr (Berg Publishers, 2000). ISBN 1-85973-436-7 p. 171–172.
  11. ^ Hollis, Isabel (December 2012). "Gendered Spaces and Wounded Bodies: Yamina Benguigui's Inch'Allah dimanche". International Journal of Francophone Studies. 15 (2): 197–213. doi:10.1386/ijfs.15.2.197_1.
  12. ^ Fauvel, Maryse (2004). "Yamina Benguigui's Inch'Allah dimanche: unveiling hybrid identities". Studies in French Cinema. IV: 147–157 – via EBSCOhost Academic Search Premier.
  13. ^ Chouffan, Alain (2008-02-21). "Yamina Benguigui : Nous irons tous au paradis" (in French). Le Nouvel Observateur. Retrieved 2008-04-11.
  14. ^ "Isabelle Adjani : Plus proche de ses origines algériennes" (in French). El Watan. 2008-01-21. Retrieved 2008-04-11.
  15. ^ "Paris: Delanoë réélu maire, Baupin perd les transports" (in French). Liberation. 2008-03-21. Retrieved 2008-04-11.
  16. ^ "Les élus 2008-2014 au Conseil de Paris" (in French). Fédération de Paris du Parti socialiste. Retrieved 2008-04-11.
  17. ^ "Nomination du gouvernement" (in French). French Government. Archived from the original on 2012-06-18. Retrieved 2012-06-15.
  18. ^ lefigaro.fr (2012-06-21). "La composition du gouvernement Ayrault II".
  19. ^ "Nomination de la representante personnelle" (in French). Elysee. Retrieved 2012-06-30.
  20. ^ a b c d e "Yamina Benguigui". The Internet Movie Database. Retrieved 2008-04-11.
  21. ^ Arnaud, Alexandra (2003-09-27). "Chez moi, la France" (in French). l'Humanité. Archived from the original on May 29, 2008. Retrieved 2008-04-11.
  22. ^ "The Tournées Festival: Le Plafond de Verre". French American Cultural Exchange. Retrieved 2008-04-12.
  23. ^ "Yamina Benguigui". uniFrance. Retrieved 2008-04-12.
  24. ^ a b c d e f "Awards for Yamina Benguigui". The Internet Movie Database. Retrieved 2008-04-11.
  25. ^ Promotion du 14 juillet, Ordre des Arts et des Lettres, communiqué du Ministère de la Culture, 15 juillet 2002, sur le site du Ministère de la Culture.
  26. ^ Décret du 11 juillet 2003 portant promotion et nomination à l'ordre national de la Légion d'honneur, JORF n°161, 13 juillet 2003, p.11943, texte n°3, Système NOR PREX0306732D, sur Légifrance.
  27. ^ "XXV Festival di CINEMA e DONNE "Eva & Eva" - Firenze - Sigillo della Pace".

External links[edit]

Media related to Yamina Benguigui at Wikimedia Commons