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Perrine Simon-Nahum: Jews in France today

Part of Dialogues on Jewish Present and Past (with audio recording)

In recent years, the situation of Jews in France has undergone fundamental transformations. What was considered as French Jewish history, shaped by the Dreyfus Affair and the Shoah, has diminished in importance. At the same time, Jewish communities are confronted with an increasing number of anti-Semitic outbreaks. However, French Judaism and its relevancy in French society have become even more vital, rather than declining in meaning. Today, Jewish life and the State of Israel are considered to be especially important in French culture and politics.

recording available

Map with all buildings that belong to the Jewish Museum Berlin. The Old Building is marked in green


Old Building, level 1, Education Room
Lindenstraße 9–14, 10969 Berlin

Perrine Simon-Nahum is an historian at the Centre de recherches historiques of the École des hautes études en sciences sociales (EHSS). Her research interests are contemporary history, intellectual history and Jewish history in France. She published, among others, La cité investée: La science du judaïsme français et la République (Paris 1992) and edited two volumes of Archives Juives (2004/05) dedicated to Jewish intellectuals. Her essay on Raymond Aron: Essai sur la condition juive contemporaine appeared in 2007.

Hans-Joachim Neubauer is culture editor of the "Rheinische Merkur" in Berlin and honorary professor at the Hochschule für Film und Fernsehen "Konrad Wolf" in Potsdam-Babelsberg. As scholar of Comparative Literature he has published, among others, Judenfiguren: Drama und Theater im frühen 19. Jahrhundert (1994; awarded with the Joachim Tiburtius-Preis) and Fama: Eine Geschichte des Gerüchts (1998, New Edition 2009, translated into six languages).

In cooperation with Centre Marc Bloch, Berlin.

Official Website

Centre Marc Bloch

Audio recording of the talk by Perrine Simon-Nahum and Hans-Joachim Neubauer (in English)
Jewish Museum Berlin 2010

Where, when, what?

  • When 29 Nov 2010
  • Where Old Building, level 1, Education Room

    Lindenstraße 9–14, 10969 Berlin

    See location on map

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Audio Recordings: Listen to Past Museum Events (65)

Listen to Past Museum Events

Lectures, book presentations, theatrical readings, panel discussions, and award ceremonies

World History in Berlin

The Humboldt Brothers and the Jewish Enlightenment
With: Uta Lohmann, Sebastian Panwitz, and Conrad Wiedemann, Humboldt researchers
Language: German

30 Oct 2019

Antisemitism Today – A Challenge for School and Society

21 February 2019
Talk by Juliane Wetzel as part of the symposium Actively Countering Antisemitism and Exclusion (in German)

Katharina Galor: The Temple Mount

9 January 2019
Archaeologist Katharina Galor talks about the historical and archaeological heritage of Jerusalem’s most controversial site – the Temple Mount (Har haBait). She presents various research initiatives and highlights the role of religiously or politically motivated agendas in the research process.

Assaf Gavron:
Achtzehn Hiebe (Eighteen Blows)

28 July 2018
Reading and Discussion
Achtzehn Hiebe is a novel of love and a detective story, a piece of contemporary history, and a journey through Israel of today. The Israeli author Assaf Gavron presents his new novel with the actor Golo Euler and the journalist Ulrich Gutmair (taz).

Stolen Judaica
Provenance Research in Israel and Germany

In this symposium, research that explores the origins of Jewish ceremonial objects exclusively in Israel and Germany, took center stage for the first time.

18/19 Jun 2018

Rechavia – Grunewald in the Orient

28 February 2018
Reading with Thomas Sparr on German-Jewish Jerusalem (in German)

A Canon of Jewish Renaissance

22 February 2018
Bernhard Jensen, author of the first monograph about the Soncino Society in conversation with publisher Thedel von Wallmoden (in German)

Jerusalem for Cowards

19 February 2018
Discussion with filmmakers Dalia Castel and Orit Nahmias following the screening of Jerusalem for Cowards (in German and English)

Who is carrying the Menorah?

8 February 2018
Talk by Steven Fine on Jewish Counter-Histories of the Arch of Titus Spoils Panel

The Many Deaths of Jew Süss

22 January 2018
Reading with Yair Mintzker on Joseph Süß Oppenheimer – Jew Süss

Dmitrij Belkin

Germanija. How I Became an Adult and a Jew in Germany

Reading and discussion on Dmitrij Belkin's narrative that also throws light on immigration today.

19 Oct 2017

IN-/EXCLUSIONS and Self-Empowerment in the Cultural Business

With Max Czollek, Dan Thy Nguyen, Sandrine Micossé-Aikins, and Mutlu Ergün-Hamaz (in German)

12 Oct 2017

Volk, Volksgemeinschaft, AfD (People, National Community, AfD)

Book presentation and discussion with Alexander Häusler and the author Michael Wildt (in German)

10 Oct 2017

Incredibly Clever

5 August 2017
Iris Berben reads Paula Buber (in German and English)

Before the After Party

15 July 2017
Reading and talk with the author Molly Antopol, translator Patricia Klobusiczky and actor Katharina Marie Schubert (in German and English).

Yousef Abad

Eliz Sanasarian and Elham Rokni on video art by Elham Rokni and the situation of Jews in Iran from the 1979 revolution to today.

6 Jul 2017

The New Völkerwanderung
Book Presentation by Asfa Wossen Asserate

3 July 2017
Asfa-Wossen Asserate presents his latest book Die neue Völkerwanderung (The New Völkerwanderung) on the grievances of the EU’s Africa policy.

Peter Schäfer – "Two gods in heaven. Concepts of god in the ancient Jewish world"

12 June 2017
Peter Schäfer and Michael Wolffsohn on monotheism in Judaism and Christianity and concepts of a second god.

With Karamba to the Bundestag – My Journey from Senegal to the German Parliament

Karamba Diaby tells of his birth country Senegal, of life in the GDR, his work in the Bundestag, and of his vision of an open and future-oriented society (in German).

1 Jun 2017

Portrait Ariel Sabar

Ariel Sabar: My Father’s Paradise: A Son's Search for His Jewish Past in Kurdish Iraq

Reading and talk with the writer Ariel Sabar on the story of his father Yona Sabar, professor of the Neo-Aramaic language, and the Kurdish-Jewish history.

11 May 2017

The Dress of the Unfaithful Wife
Artist Talk and Discussion on Women and Sexuality in Judaism

9 May 2017
Talk with Andi LaVine Arnovitz, Amy K. Milligan, Professor for Jewish Studies and Women's Studies, and Emily D. Bilski, art historian, on the role of women in religious Judaism.

Israelis in Germany
Ideological Debates and Changing Identities

Talk and Slideshow with Dr. Dani Kranz and Katja Harbi from the University of Wuppertal on Israeli Jews in today's Germany (in German).

4 May 2017


Im/Possibilities – Perspectives on Refugee Participation

Conference on the situation for refugees in Europe and Germany. Recording of the opening event with a talk by Gurminder K Bhambra, Professor of Sociology at the University of Warwick, UK, followed by a panel discussion (in German and English).

29 Mar 2017

Our Father: A Sinti Family Recounts

Conversation and reading with the German-Sinti civil rights activist and author Anita Awosusi and her daughter Tayo Onutor about their family’s history (in German).

23 Mar 2017

Götz Aly

Europe Against the Jews. 1880-1945

22 February 2017
Historian Götz Aly and Daniel Cohn-Bendit discuss antisemitism in Eastern and Western Europe from 1880 to the present (in German).

Porträt der Autorin und Buchtitel <cite>Die Zerreißprobe. Wie die Angst vor dem Fremdem unsere Demokratie bedroht</cite>

The Acid Test
How Fear of Foreigners is Threatening our Democracy

The Islamic studies and education scholar Lamya Kaddor reads from her book and discusses integration with Minister of State Aydan Özoğuz and Andreas Zick (in German).


Gottes Körper (God's Body)

13 February 2017
Christoph Markschies in conversation with Peter Schäfer about Christian conceptions of God and their roots in other ancient religions (in German).

Portrait Johanna Wokalek

All Sorts of Stories

21 November 2016
The actor Johanna Wokalek reads from Bertha Pappenheim’s German translation of the Maase book, a collection of Yiddish stories, fairy tales, and legends (in German).

Porträt Joshua Cohen

Joshua Cohen:
You want a golem?

17 November 2016
Reading and conversation with Joshua Cohen and Caspar Battegay about the golem myth in the age of automation.

Black and white portrait of a young man with glasses in half profile

A Jew in Neukölln – My Path to Coexistence of Religions

The theology student and writer Ármin Langer reads from his book and talks about Jewish life in Neukölln (in German).

19 Oct 2016

The Clay Giant's Alive!

8 October 2016
Anke Kuhl reads from her comic about two kids and their golem, with musical accompaniment by the cellist Martin Klenk (in German).

Portrait Christian Berkel

Reading with Christian Berkel: Tevye the Dairyman

9 July 2016
To mark the 100th anniversary of Sholem Alejchem’s death, the actor Christian Berkel will read from the new translation of the book Tevye the Dairyman

Bookcover (detail)

Herzl reloaded – It’s No Fairytale

Staged reading. Doron Rabinovici, writer and historian, and Natan Sznaider, sociologist, have a fictional email correspondence with Theodor Herzl, the founder of Zionism (in German).

7 Jul 2016

Portrait Ludwig Haas

Ludwig Haas – A Left-liberal Campaigner for Peace and Democracy

9 June 2016
Symposium with Evening Lecture by Gerhart Baum on the liberal Campaigner Ludwig Haas (1875-1930) and "Perspectives of Left-wing Liberalism Today".

The Holocaust and the Problem of Visual Representation

30 May 2016
Talk with artist and exhibition curator Peter Weibel about Boris Lurie and visual representation of the Holocaust (in German).


Helga Krohn: Bruno Asch

19 May 2016
Reading and talk with Helga Krohn on the local politician and socialist Bruno Asch.

Book cover

Angst ums Abendland (Fears For the West)
Book Presentation with Daniel Bax

Talk with Daniel Bax and Gideon Botsch on Right-wing populist parties, anti-Muslim sentiments, flight and asylum (in German).

6 Apr 2016

JMB Logo

Prize for Understanding and Tolerance

Acceptance speech by the 2015 award winner: W. Michael Blumenthal, Founding Director of the Jewish Museum Berlin (in German).

14 Nov 2015

JMB Logo

Béla Guttmann - The World History of Football in one Person

4 August 2015
The writer Detlev Claussen presents his book about the Hungarian-Jewish soccer coach Béla Guttmann (in German).

JMB Logo

Attempts to Describe Anti-Semitism

Book presentation and discussion on the history of antisemitism research before 1944 with Hans-Joachim Hahn, Olaf Kistenmacher, Dr. Werner Treß, and Franziska Krah (in German).

22 Apr 2015

JMB Logo

From a Berlin Farce to a Story of Success

2 March 2015
The writer Daniel Bussenius talks with Inka Bertz and Heinrich Wefing, reporter from Die Zeit, about the museum’s development from 1971 to 2001 (in German).

JMB Logo

The Realignment of "Education after Auschwitz" in Immigration Society

Book presentation and panel discussion with the author Rosa Fava, Angela Kühner (University of Frankfurt), Selman Erkovan, history teacher in training, and Marco Kühnert, a guide at the Neuengamme Concentration Camp Memorial, Hamburg (in German).

27 Jan 2015

JMB Logo

The Book of Job. Aesthetics, Ethics, Hermeneutics

The editors of a volume of essays about the Book of Job, Leora Batnitzky (Princeton) and Ilana Pardes (Jerusalem), in conversation with Vivian Liska
Language: in German and English

21 Jan 2015

JMB Logo

What’s your "Heimat"?

14 November 2014
W. Michael Blumenthal, Founding Director of the Jewish Museum Berlin, and Monika Grütters, Federal Government Commissioner for Culture and the Media, talk about culture, religion, and being at home in a foreign place (in German).

JMB Logo

Zimzum. God and the creation of the world

Author Christoph Schulte talks with Micha Brumlik and Vivian Liska about his book on the notion of zimzum (tzimtzum) in Jewish mysticism
Language: German

30 Oct 2014

JMB Logo

Hebrew Worlds – On the Presence of Ancient Texts in Modern Ivrith

Anne Birkenhauer, a translator and the August Wilhelm Schlegel Guest Professor of the German Translation Fund and the FU Berlin, gives her inaugural lecture (in German).

27 Oct 2014

JMB Logo

Forgotten Soldiers?

3 September 2014
Historian Tim Grady presents his research on the commemoration of German-Jewish soldiers from the First World War.

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Modernized, then Tolerated?

Micha Brumlik, Petra Bahr, Kadir Sanci, and Thomas Bauer about religion and navigating between tradition and adaptation
Language: German

10 Oct 2013

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1933: Denial, Opposition, and Protest

Wolf Gruner about his research into German Jews’ responses to Nazi persecution (in German).

8 Aug 2013

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Peter Schäfer: The Origins of Jewish Mysticism

Panel discussion between the author Peter Schäfer, Christoph Markschies, and Micha Brumlik about Schäfer’s book on the history of early Jewish mysticism
Language: German

25 Jun 2012

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The History of Jews and Dönme in Turkey

The Turkish studies scholar Corry Guttstadt and the historian Marc Baer discuss the history of Jews and Dönme (converts) in Turkey (in German).

31 Jan 2011

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Perrine Simon-Nahum: Jews in France Today

Talk by Perrine Simon-Nahum about her book on the circumstances of Jews in France, both past and present.

29 Nov 2010

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W. Michael Blumenthal: Around the World in Eighty Years. My Life

W. Michael Blumenthal, Founding Director of the Jewish Museum Berlin, presents his memoir (in German).

30 Sept 2010

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Jewish Youth Movement in Germany

22 May 2010
German-language talk by Ulrike Pilarczyk and panel discussion with Micha Brumlik, Hans Jakob Ginsburg, Stefanie Schüler-Springorum, and Moshe Zuckermann about the history of the Zionist youth movement in Germany (in German).

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Dialogues on Jewish Present: On the Question of Redemption – Messianism and the End of Days

with Moshe Idel, Elliot R. Wolfson, and Micha Brumlik about the Messianic promise of redemption and its relevance in the twenty-first century
Language: English

10 Dec 2009

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Walther Rathenau's Life: Text and Context

Talk by Shulamit Volkov about the life of the writer, politician, and industrialist Walther Rathenau (in German).

15 Oct 2009

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Migrants Moving History

Saskia Sassen about immigration, diversity, and future prospects for dealing with history and citizenship in multiethnic societies.

25 Oct 2008

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Self Displaced Person. Peter Szondi's Problematic Judaism

3 December 2007
Talk by Andreas Isenschchmid about the life and work of the literary scholar Peter Szondi (in German).

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Painted in words. The portrait of a lost time

10 October 2007
Reading and conversation with the artist Samuel Bak about his family’s story and his survival as a child in German-occupied Vilnius (in German).

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A synagogue curtain at the Brandenburg Cathedral Chapter

23 November 2006
Talk by Vera Bendt about a synagogue curtain that was discovered at the Brandenburg Cathedral Chapter, where it had been listed in records as an altar curtain (in German).

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Exile in Shanghai

Conversation between W. Michael Blumenthal and Horst Eisfelder about the time they both spent in Shanghai, where 18,000 Jews from Germany had taken refuge (in German).

14 Nov 2006

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The place of psychoanalysis in the history of the Jews

30 May 2005
Talk by Eli Zaretsky about the influence of psychoanalysis on Judaism and the place of psychoanalysis in Jewish history.

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Breaking Ground: Adventures in Life and Architecture

In conversation with Susanne Weingarten, Daniel Libeskind presents his autobiography.
Language: English

25 Jan 2005

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The Fragile Foundation: The Quest for German-Jewish “Normalcy”

Salomon Korn reads essays from his book about Jewish life in Germany, Jewish culture and remembrance, architecture, and politics.
Language: German

30 Sep 2003

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Times of Commemoration: On Jewish Histories and Others

Book presentation by the historian Dan Diner about remembering the twentieth century as an era of violence, forced displacement, and genocide (in German).

24 Jun 2003