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JS Lecture Series - Pierre Birnbaum - Léon Blum : Between the State, Socialism, and Judaism

Tuesday, February 20, 2018, 6:00 pm – 7:30 pm

cordially invites you to a lecture by

Pierre Birnbaum

(University of Paris I Panthéon-Sorbonne)

Léon Blum : Between the State, Socialism, and Judaism

This lecture will present an entirely new interpretation of the French statesman Léon Blum (1872-1950) as a crucial figure able to link several dimensions, often seen as contradictory. He was a "state Jew," who loved the State as an independent variable, far away from the dominant Marxist reductionist vision. He was a socialist who fought against the Bolshevik interpretation of history and who successfully transformed society in the name of the people. As such, he was also concerned about the destiny of immigrants. He always remained deeply committed to his Jewish identity, and was even quite proud of it. He was thus an exceptional figure within the homogeneous French republican public space, in which citizens are expected to hide their personal values.

Tuesday, February 20 at 6 p.m.
Gellner Room, Monument Building

Pierre Birnbaum is an emeritus professor at the University of Paris I. He has written several books on the sociology of the state and on the comparative history of contemporary Jewries, focusing on the state as an independent variable of their path towards emancipation.