Barely 30 kilometres from the renowned Hall of Mirrors at the Palace of Versailles, France's perpetual search for harmonious relations with its post-colonial Muslim population has its own reflection in the troubled recent history of one small town.
On first encounter, Ecquevilly – a community of only 4,200 people – seems just another part of the commuter belt west of Paris.
A minority of French Muslims wish to lead lives divorced from secular western society. This desire became so pronounced in Ecquevilly, under the influence of a charismatic preacher who was born and grew up there, that two reporters from the Catholic daily newspaper, La Croix, recently spent three weeks there observing everyday life.
Their powerful report, its title roughly translating as "Salafism in Daily Life", stretched to several pages and had a profound impact on residents, officials and community leaders.