Daniel Cohn-Bendit and Pierre Goldman had a different – even contrary – view of the events of May 68 in Paris. They represent two exceptional biographies of leftist Jews in postwar France. Despite – or perhaps because of – this exceptionality they also personify many experiences that strongly influenced the generation of Jews in France born between 1940 and 1945. Many became associated with the leftist movement beyond the Communist Party and played an important role in the events of May 68. The article will explain the situation in France after the liberation that culminated in May 68. It will also discuss the factors contributing to the political radicalisation of many Jewish intellectuals. On the basis of the two biographies the article will explore any relevance their ‘Jewishness’ might have had, and to what extent they mirror a specific Jewish history of experiences, located between the strained relations of Résistance and Holocaust.
Author(s): Sebastian Voigt,