Roubaix

Roubaix is a city in Northern France, with a population of 95,600, making it the smallest of the cities in this project by a large margin. There is an estimated 20% of the population that is Muslim, around 19,120 living in Roubaix. There is not a significant population of Jewish peoples in Roubaix, and has not had a Jewish place of worship since the Jewry of Roubaix handed over its Sefer Torah to the Jewry of Lille, a nearby city. Roman Catholics make up about 45% of the population, an estimated 43,020 peoples.

Because of its size compared to Marseille and Paris, there is less to see in the map of Roubaix. However, the Muslim population of Roubaix has attracted French national attention. Far-right politician Marine Le Pen, of the National Front, said Roubaix was an example of “the forced Islamization of France.”

The map below shows the Catholic Churches, Private Islamic Schools, and Mosques of Roubaix, along with all public transport sites in the city:

Roubaix presents a much different case than both Paris and Marseille, as it is a relatively small city located within the Lille metropolitan area with comparably insignificant infrastructure.  Roubaix is the only city featured in this project that has more mosques than churches; remarkably there are twice as many mosques in Roubaix as Catholic churches. Even with this fact, the churches do appear to be more centrally located, in general, than the mosques, at least in regards to the public transportation lines. The public transportation infrastructure is very small, and it is difficult to determine relative accessibility of the institutions. From the map, it appears that it is only halal restaurants, which are directly by public transport stops. It is surprising that, with the amount of mosques and high percentage of Muslims living in the city, there are no halal markets within the city. Further explore Roubaix’s mosques here.

Digital Humanities Project