First Generation

Between 1975 and 1980 there was a high level of family reunification immigration from Africa to France. The first generation born in France from this wave of immigration are now coming of age. Arantas’ topical project aims to explore issues of national identity through the lives of these first-generation Afro-French women as they navigate the conflict between European liberal culture and the traditional education of their parents. She hopes to reveal her subjects’ quest for identity whilst they simultaneously work for financial independence, freedom as women, and above all, for a socio-cultural space that will legitimise their mixed culture. Arantas chose to focus on the women as their place in this process of integration is critical – many still carry the greater responsibility for family, work and cultural transmission than their male counterparts.

“…between colonialism and cosmopolitism, between a sense of not belonging and their nationality, many use the word Schizophrenie to describe how it is to construct their identity in the middle of two antagonistic cultures.

For the black women of France, conquering their place in society is an individual and persistent movement that constantly met with obstacles on sexism and on prejudice. Although they face the same troubles as all women in modern times, they have also to face the historical opposition force of a recent colonization social mentality and have to overcome economical and lack of education problems that result from their parent’s immigration origin.’

Carolina Arantes

Carolina is a Brazilian independent photographer based in Paris, France. Laureate at the Fondation Jean-Luc Lagardère Grant 2015, she pursues documentary stories both in Europe as in Brazil. She has also participated at VII Agency Masterclass 2014-2015.

Born in Minas Gerais, she grew up between countryside city Uberaba and the megalopole of Sao Paulo. She has as Photography degree at SENAC , Social Communication Journalism at the Catholic University of Sao Paulo and master degree in Cultural Project Development at Barcelona University.

Her work can be seen in publications such as GEO De, New York Times, LENS Blog, Le Monde, CNN, Epoca Magazine, among others.