BENSOUSSAN, GEORGES (1952– ), French historian and Holocaust scholar. After completing a doctorate in modern history, Bensoussan began teaching history in high school while pursuing a parallel career in historical research and writing. An active militant against antisemitism and Holocaust denial, to which he sought to oppose precise historical knowledge and provocative reflections on the transmission of memory (Génocide pour mémoire: des racines du désastre aux questions d'aujourd'hui, 1989; Auschwitz en héritage? Du bon usage de la mémoire, 2003), Bensoussan collaborated on several journals (Raison Présente in 1989; Le débat in 1994), and was eventually appointed chief editor of the Revue d'Histoire de la Shoah, a major publication first issued in 1946 as Le Monde Juif and renamed in 1997 to better suit its scientific purposes. Later, reacting to the resurgence of antisemitism in France against the background of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, Bensoussan wrote several pamphlets (some under a pseudonym) and books about the new antisemitism (Anti-Semitism in French Schools: Turmoil of a Republic, published by the Hebrew university of Jerusalem, Vidal Sassoon International Center for the Study of Antisemitism, 2004), which echo his previous reflections on the convergence and relationship between antisemitism, anti-Zionism, and Holocaust denial ("Négationnisme et antisionnisme: récurrences et convergences des discours du rejet," in: Revue d'Histoire de la Shoah, May–Aug. 1999), and his academic work on the history of antisemitism in France since the Dreyfus affair (L'idéologie du rejet: enquête sur "Le monument Henry" ou archéologie du fantasme antisémite dans la France de la fin du xixe siècle, 1993). Bensoussan also wrote a general history of the Holocaust (1996) and an intellectual and political history of Zionism (2002).
[Dror Franck Sullaper (2nd ed.)]
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