views updated

Attali, Jacques 1943-


PERSONAL:

Born November 1, 1943, in Algiers, Algeria. Education: École Polytechnique Institute d'Études Politiques de Paris; École des Mines de Paris; École Nationale d'Administration; Paris University, Ph.D.

ADDRESSES:

Office—Attali & Assocs., 28, rue Bayard, 75008 Paris, France.

CAREER:

Economist, educator, and writer. École Polytechnique, professor of economics, 1970-85, École des Mines, École des Ponts et Chaussées, lecturer in economics, 1971; special advisor to the president of France, Paris, France, 1981-91; European Bank Reconstruction & Development, London, England, founder and president, 1991-93; PlaNet Finance, founder and president.

WRITINGS:


Analyse économique de la vie politique (title means "Economic Analysis of Political Life"), preface by Jean Ullmo, Presses Universitaires de France (Paris, France), 1972.

Les Modèles politiques (title means "Political Models"), Presses Universitaires de France (Paris, France), 1972.

(With Marc Guillaume) L'anti-économique (title means "Anti-Economics"), Presses Universitaires de France (Paris, France), 1974.

La parole et l'outil (title means "The Word and the Tool"), Presses Universitaires de France (Paris, France), 1975.

Conséquences sociales de la situation économique contemporaine: [conférence à l'occasion du Cours international de stagiaires sur la mise en oeuvre d'une politique sociale active, organisé par l'Institut international d'études sociales, Geneve, 8 mai 1975], L'Institut (Geneva, Switzerland), 1976.

Bruits: essai sur l'économie politique de la musique, Presses Universitaires de France (Paris, France), 1977, translated by Brian Massumi as Noise: The Political Economy of Music, foreword by Fredric Jameson, afterword by Susan McClary, University of Minnesota Press (Minneapolis, MN), 1985, reprinted French edition, Fayard/PUF (Paris, France), 2001.

La nouvelle économie française (title means "The New French Economy"), Flammarion (Paris, France), 1978.

L'ordre cannibale: vie et mort de la médecine (title means "The Cannibal Order: Essay on the Political Economy of Medicine"), B. Grasset (Paris, France), 1979.

Les trois mondes: pour une théorie de l'après-crise, Fayard (Paris, France), 1981.

Histoires du temps (title means "History of Time"), Fayard (Paris, France), 1982.

La figure de Fraser (title means "Fraser's Figure"), Fayard (Paris, France), 1984.

Un homme d'influence: Sir Siegmund Warburg, 1902-1982, Fayard (Paris, France), 1985, translated by Barbara Ellis as A Man of Influence: The Extraordinary Career of S.G. Warburg, Adler & Adler (Bethesda, MD), 1987.

Au propre et au figuré: une histoire de la propriété, Fayard (Paris, France), 1988.

Eternal Life, a Novel, 1989.

Lines of Horizon, 1990.

Le premier jour après moi (novel; title means "The First Day after Me"), Fayard (Paris, France), 1990.

1492, Fayard (Paris, France), 1991.

Millennium: Winners and Losers in the Coming World Order, translated from the French by Leila Conners and Nathan Gardels, Times Books (New York, NY), 1991.

Verbatim, three volumes, Fayard (Paris, France), 1993–95.

Europe(s), Fayard (Paris, France), 1994.

Il viendra (novel), Fayard (Paris, France), 1994.

Économie de l'apocalypse: trafic et proliférations nucléaires, Fayard (Paris, France), 1995.

Chemins de sagesse: traité du labyrinthe, Fayard (Paris, France), 1996.

Au-delà de nulle part (novel), Fayard (Paris, France), 1997.

Dictionnaire du XXIe siècle, Fayard (Paris, France), 1998.

Fraternités: une nouvelle utopie (novel), Fayard (Paris, France), 1999.

Les portes du ciel: pièce en cinq actes, Fayard (Paris, France), 1999.

La femme du menteur (novel), Fayard (Paris, France), 1999.

The Labyrinth in Culture and Society: Pathways to Wisdom, translated by Joseph Rowe, North Atlantic Books (Berkeley, CA), 1999.

Blaise Pascal; ou, Le génie français, Fayard (Paris, France), 2000.

Nouv'elles (novel), Fayard (Paris, France), 2002.

Les Juifs, le monde et l'argent: histoire économique du peuple juif, Fayard (Paris, France), 2002.

L'homme nomade, Fayard (Paris, France), 2003.

Le confrérie des éveillés (novel), Fayard (Paris, France), 2004.

Raison et foi: Averroès, Maïmonide, Thomas d'Aquin. [Conférences données par Jacques Attali à la bibliothèque nationale de France, dans le grand auditorium du site François-Mitterrand, les 2, 3 et 4 juin 2003], Bibliotheque nationale de France (Paris, France), 2004.

La voie humaine: pour une nouvelle socialdémocratie, Fayard (Paris, France), 2004.

C'était François Mitterrand, Fayard (Paris, France), 2005.

Karl Marx; ou, L'esprit du monde: biographie, Fayard (Paris, France), 2005.

Contributor to books, including Opinion européenne face aux multinationals, C.E.E.I.M., 1977; Quale socialismo, quale Europa, Feltrinelli economica (Milan, Italy), 1977; Décision et pouvoir dans la société française: colloque, Paris, Université de Dauphine 1, 2 Décembre 1978, Union Generale d'Editions (Paris, France), 1979; Jusqu'où tolérer? / Septième Forum Le Monde Le Mans, Le Monde (Paris, France), 1996; Pour un modèle européen d'enseignement supérieur, Stock (Paris, France), 1998; Les utopies, moteurs de l'histoire?: les rendez-vous de l'histoire, Blois 2000, Pleins feux (Nantes, France), 2001; La Français, langue du monde, Harmatten (Paris, France), 2003; Israel, les Juifs, l'antisémitisme, Editions de l'atelier: Editions ouvrieres (Paris, France), 2005. Works have been published in English and Spanish.

SIDELIGHTS:

Jacques Attali is a renowned French economist who, during the 1980s, served as a special advisor to former French president François Mitterand. He is also the author or coauthor of numerous books, including nonfiction and novels. The author recounts the years he worked with Mitterand in the three-volume Verbatim. The first volume describes Mitterand's initial five years in office. Nation critic Daniel Singer commented that this "book does not contain earthshaking revelations. Its interest lies less in discoveries than in confirmations. Thus it shows plainly the American domination of the Western alliance." In the second volume, the author continues to provide insights into the French presidency and world politics. "Verbatim—and certainly the second volume of it—is to be read mainly for its gossipy detail about French and European politics in the 1980s," reported a contributor to the Economist.

In his Bruits: essai sur l'économie politique de la musique, published in English as Noise: The Political Economy of Music, Attali discuses his theory that music is a gauge of how society is moving, both on a broad social scale and economically. "Not only does music play this role in history, it prefigures the future, both in its compositional procedures and in the ways in which it is controlled, distributed, and consumed," explained Thomas Willis in High Fidelity. Willis went on to write that "anyone interested in our contemporary world can no longer afford to ignore him [Attali]. More than any commentator I know, he legitimates and explains the activities of our current musical adventurers and their relationship to the muddled world in which we live."

Millennium: Winners and Losers in the Coming World Order is an extended essay on how the future world may look politically, the reasons why the United States may lose its preeminence in world affairs, and the countries that may overtake the United States in terms of global influence. A Publishers Weekly contributor called the book "as terse as it is clear and challenging." William Diebold, Jr., writing in Foreign Affairs commented that the author "has some original ideas."

Attali has also written fiction, including the novel Le premier jour après moi, ("The First Day after Me"). The narrator wakes up and realizes he is dead and then reflects on his life over the next day as his body is discovered. In a review of the novel for the Economist, a contributor observed: "The style is restrained and detached, punctuated only with aphorisms full of the ennui of a man of power."

Attali provides a fictionalized view of a new utopian world in Fraternités: une nouvelle utopie. After spending five decades in outer space, travelers return to Earth to find a very different social world in which everyone is ruled by a central political body. The author uses this conceit to delve into the world of globalization, international markets, and shifting populations of people willing to travel worldwide for opportunities. The author also discusses such notions as liberty and equality. Writing a review of a Spanish edition of the book, Utopian Studies contributor Andre J.M. Prevos commented: "Attali's work falls within the category of utopian novels with both updates and specificity. The updated section is the one in which he underlines the present-day situation of the world … and underlines that this situation may force adjustments on the part of utopian thinkers who want to launch a new movement. The specific element in Attali's work is the fact that he clearly indicates a way in which the idea of fraternity could be launched in France."

BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL SOURCES:


PERIODICALS


Biography, fall, 2005, Laurent Mauduit, review of Karl Marx; ou, L'esprit du monde: biographie, p. 718.

Economist, September 8, 1990, review of Le premier jour après moi, p. 104; July 15, 1995, review of Verbatim II, p. 67.

Forbes, February 3, 1992, Steve Forbes, review of Millennium: Winners and Losers in the Coming World Order, p. 26.

Foreign Affairs, winter, 1991, William Diebold, Jr., review of Millennium, p. 187.

High Fidelity, September, 1985, Thomas Willis, review of Noise: The Political Economy of Music, p. MA13.

International Money Marketing, September, 2004, "Attali Joins PIMS International Speaker Panel," p. 4.

Nation, July 26, 1993, Daniel Singer, review of Verbatim I, p. 151.

New Statesman, March 13, 2006, "The New Globalisation Guru?," p. 28.

Publishers Weekly, July 25, 1991, review of Millennium, p. 42.

UN Chronicle, December, 2004, "Interview with … Jacques Attali," p. 50.

Utopian Studies, winter, Andre J.M. Prevos, review of Fraternités: une nouvelle utopie, 2001, p. 140.

ONLINE


Jacques Attali Home Page,http://www.attali.com (July 6, 2006).

London Speaker Bureau,http://www.londonspeakerbureau.co.uk/ (July 6, 2006), brief profile of Attali.

Attali, Jacques 1943-

Updated About encyclopedia.com content Print Article Share Article