The Quenelle Favorite 



Sep 6 2013


Paris, Paris France

The quenelle (French pronunciation: ​[kə.nɛl]) is a gesture created and popularized by French political activist and comedian Dieudonné. He first used it in 2005 in his sketch entitled "1905" about French secularism, and has used it since in a wide variety of contexts.The quenelle became viral, with many photos posted to the internet showing individuals posing while performing quenelles at mundane places (wedding parties, high school classes, etc.).

In late 2013, following its use by professional footballer Nicolas Anelka during a match, Jewish leaders, anti-racism groups and public officials in France have interpreted it as an inverted Nazi salute and as an expression of antisemitism. French officials have sought to ban the gesture due to its perceived subtext of antisemitism.

The quenelle gesture is usually performed by pointing one arm diagonally downwards palm down, while touching the shoulder with the opposite hand. Although the quenelle is usually done with the hand at shoulder level, it can also be done with different variations (e.g. elbow or wrist level).

Dieudonné described it as "a kind of up yours gesture to the establishment with an in the ass dimension. But it's a quenelle, so it's a bit softer, less violent".

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