Ideas

The Oldest Hatred

Anti-semitism has deep roots in France. Jews have been living there since the Middle Ages, coexisting in relative peace but never far removed from persecution or expulsion. The French Revolution gave Jews full civil rights, but within one-hundred years, the hatred was back. Recent anti-Jewish demonstrations, and the Charlie Hebdo and HyperCacher murders, show that anti-semitism is still a potent force in contemporary France.
Front page cover of the newspaper L’Aurore of Thursday 13 January 1898, with the letter J’accuse...!, written by Émile Zola about the Dreyfus affair. The headline reads "I accuse! Letter to the President of the Republic". (Wikipedia)
Listen to the full episode53:58

Anti-semitism has deep roots in France. Jews have been living there since the Middle Ages, coexisting in relative peace but never far removed from persecution or expulsion. The French Revolution gave Jews full civil rights, but within one-hundred years, the hatred was back. An anti-semitic book called La France Juive became widely popular in the late-19th century. Recent anti-Jewish demonstrations, and the Charlie Hebdo and HyperCacher murders, show that anti-semitism is still a potent force in contemporary France. Philip Coulter talks to scholars, historians and Jewish community leaders in Paris. **This episode originally aired January 26, 2016.


Guest in this episode:

  • Esther Benbassa, Director of studies at l'Ecole pratique des hautes études (Sorbonne), Senator, Val-de-Marne.
     
  • Michel Wieviorka, Sociologist, director of the Centre d'Analyses et d'Interventions Sociologique (CADIS) at l'École des hautes études en sciences sociales, Paris.
     
  • Jean-Marc Dreyfus, Reader in Holocaust Studies, University of Manchester.
     
  • Nancy Green, Director of studies at l'École des hautes études en sciences sociales, Paris.

     

**This episode was produced by Philip Coulter

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