Politics of History in Politics: On the Eve of the French Elections
History has long been a very French passion. Like elsewhere, it has also become a political battleground, flaring up at each election cycle. In 2022, as in 2017, historians have felt compelled to enter the political arena and respond directly to political (ab)uses of the past. Collective editorial efforts have sought to both correct mistakes and offer alternative visions of the country’s history, reaching far back in time and widening the scope of analysis. Today, what France will be seems to hinge more than ever on what we think it was.
Jérémie Foa is a Lecturer at Aix-Marseille Université and works on the Wars of Religion in sixteenth-century France. His latest book, Tous ceux qui tombent: visages du massacre de la St-Barthélemy (2019), focused on the anonymous victims of 1572. He is one of the author of Zemmour contre l’histoire.
Mame-Fatou Niang is Associate Professor of French and Francophone Studies at Carnagie Mellon University. She is the author of Identités Françaises (2019). She works also as a photographer and she co-directed Mariannes Noires: Mosaïques Afropéennes with Kaytie Nielsen.
Nicolas Delalande is Associate Professor at the Centre for History at Sciences Po and Columbia Alliance Visiting Professor. His research focuses on the history of the State, inequalities, and solidarities in Europe over the 19th and 20th centuries.
Nadia Urbinati is Kyriakos Tsakopoulos Professor of Political Theory at Columbia. She specializes in modern and contemporary political thought and the democratic and anti-democratic traditions.
Thomas Dodman is Assistant Professor of French at Columbia. His research focuses on the history of modern France and its empire, with a broad training in European, cultural and intellectual history, and ancillary interests in psychoanalysis, anthropology, political economy, and social theory.
This event is organized by the French Cultural Society, Columbia Maison Française, European Institut and Alliance Program.