Lafayette, the Great Mediator

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If Americans were asked to name a French person, Lafayette would be one of the first to come to mind. But while he is nicknamed “the hero of two worlds,” his role in the American War of Independence has actually been scarcely documented. And his political career in France after returning from the United States is even less so. However, two books looking back at his exemplary life have recently been published. In the U.S., Mike Duncan has written Hero of Two Worlds: The Marquis de Lafayette in the Age of Revolution, and in France, Laurent Zecchini has released Lafayette, héraut de la liberté. Zecchini, a former journalist for Le Monde, has had the advantage of being able to access the Marquis’ personal archives. He sat down with France-Amérique to explain why Lafayette is so underestimated in France.

The New Melting Pot

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A demographic wave is changing France and America and founding an unprecedented society, one of radical new diversity that has nothing to do with any community.

“The Afghanistan Disaster Is Not the End of America as a World Power”

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Having represented France on the U.N. Security Council from 2009 to 2014 before working as the French ambassador in Washington until 2019, Gérard Araud is a shrewd analyst of our changing world. He has released his memoirs, Passeport diplomatique : Quarante ans au Quai d’Orsay since leaving the embassy, and this month is publishing a book on Henry Kissinger, whose realism and sense of history have been a source of inspiration. Continuing this realpolitik tradition, Gérard Araud sat down with France-Amérique to offer his unconventional perspective on the current debacle in Afghanistan.

Roger Cohen: “Being a Francophile Is a Life Sentence”

Roger Cohen has been a journalist for the New York Times since 1990, and has worked as a foreign correspondent in some 15 countries including in the Middle East and the Balkans. Both Francophone and more Francophile than ever, he was named Paris bureau chief for the Times in early 2021, in the city where he began his career as a correspondent almost 30 years ago.

Why Toussaint Louverture Needs to Be Taught in School

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France and America are beginning to recognize their responsibility in slavery. In light of this shift, British-Mauritian historian Sudhir Hazareesingh, a professor at Oxford and the author of a biography of Toussaint Louverture, is appealing to both countries to include the hero of the Haitian Revolution in their curriculums and national narratives. Nicknamed “Black Spartacus,” Louverture liberated the slaves of the French colony of St. Domingue (now Haiti) in 1791 and, sharing the philosophy of the Enlightenment, declared the very first Black republic.

“Being a Woman, Jewish, and a Rabbi Is Not a Transgression”

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After working as a journalist in New York City, Nancy-born Delphine Horvilleur studied at Hebrew Union College in Manhattan, graduating as a rabbi in 2008. After returning to Paris, she became the editorial director of the Jewish art and philosophy journal Tenou’a and wrote a number of essays including Anti-Semitism Revisited and Vivre avec nos morts, which was published in March. She is now considered one of the leading intellectuals of her generation and her shabbat services are renowned for combining traditional hymns and contemporary compositions.

“Nothing in the Quran Forbids a Woman from Becoming an Imam”

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Kahina Bahloul was born in 1979. Her mother is French and her father is a Muslim Berber from the Kabyle region of Algeria. She decided to move to Paris at the age of twenty, and after studying Islamology, she became France’s first female imam. She has just published Mon islam, ma liberté, a work whose title reflects both the author and her stance.

To Be, or Not to Be, Woke

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In France as in the United States, we are currently transitioning from political correctness, now an obsolete term, to a further stage: woke ideology.