Weber, Eugen 1925-2007 (Eugen Joseph Weber)

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Weber, Eugen 1925-2007 (Eugen Joseph Weber)


See index for CA sketch: Born April 24, 1925, in Bucharest, Romania; died of pancreatic cancer, May 17, 2007, in Brentwood, CA. Historian, educator, and author. A retired history professor at the University of California at Los Angeles, Weber was a renowned scholar of modern French history. After graduating form Ashville College in 1943, he enlisted in the British Army, seeing action in India, Belgium, and Germany. After World War II, he continued his studies at Emmanuel College, Cambridge, earning a B.A. in 1950, M.A. in 1953, and M.Litt. in 1955. While a Cambridge student, he spent time in Paris attending the Institut d'Etudes Politiques and also teaching English. This experience led to his becoming a confirmed Francophile, and he subsequently made the history of France his passion. After completing his formal education, Weber moved to Canada and taught briefly at the University of Alberta. He then went to the University of Iowa before joining the UCLA faculty in 1956. Weber would remain on the faculty in Los Angeles for the rest of his career, becoming a full professor of history in 1964, chairing his department from 1965 to 1968, and serving as dean of Social Sciences for a year and of the College of Letters and Sciences from 1977 to 1982. Although he was well versed in European history in general, as a scholar Weber was best known for his expertise in French history. He was noted for pointing out that France did not actually begin to have a strong national identity until after the Franco-Prussian War in the 1870s. Before that time, it was a culturally mixed region where only a small minority of the people actually spoke French. Weber's books about France have become standard college texts, and his contributions to French history were appreciated by the French government, which awarded him the Ordre National des Palmes Académiques in 1977. Among his many works are The Nationalist Revival in France (1959), Europe since 1751: A Modern History (1972), Peasants into Frenchmen: The Modernization of Rural France, 1870-1914 (1977), My France: Politics, Culture, Myth (1991), and Apocalypses: Prophecies, Cults, and Millennial Beliefs through the Ages (1999). Weber also became well known to the general public in 1989, when he hosted the television series The Western Tradition.



Chicago Tribune, May 25, 2007, Section 3, p. 7.

Los Angeles Times, May 20, 2007, p. B12.

New York Times, May 22, 2007, p. C23; May 24, 2007, p. A2.

Times (London, England), June 21, 2007, p. 69.

Washington Post, May 27, 2007, p. C8.