The tragedy of October 7 has given rise to numerous analyses in the diaspora. In this text, Joseph Ziegler offers a more intimate reading of the event as experienced from France, a personal account filled with the thoughts of the youngest Israeli taken hostage by Hamas and whose whereabouts are unknown today. 

From the day after the massacre on October 7, archiving and documentation work began, reflecting a first effort to elaborate and integrate the magnitude of the event into everyone’s consciousness. This work of immediate memory is part of a collective imagination and a set of testimonial practices that trace the history of both the Holocaust and the pogroms. Sensitive to the ambiguity of Israeli society, Frédérique Leichter-Flack examines the effects of this intertwining of memories of the massacres, between traumatic reliving and a resource for avoiding being stunned by the Gorgon.

The speech by German Vice-Chancellor Robert Habeck, a member of the Green Party, on the situation in the Middle East on 2 November struck a chord. With an infallible clarity that in Europe could probably only come from Germany, he insisted both on the right of the Palestinians to have their own state and on Israel’s right to defend its security. He criticised the ambivalence of some sections of public opinion towards Hamas and explained why Germany and Europe, if they want to remain true to the basis of their political legitimacy, must not give in in the fight against anti-Semitism under any circumstances and for no “humanitarian” reason. K. introduces the translation of his speech into French with a short text by Julia Christ and Danny Trom explaining its significance in the confusion of current political discourse.

The Judeo-Spaniards “of the East” – those of the former Ottoman Empire (as opposed to the Judeo-Spaniards “of the West” who were mostly in Morocco) – “know each other and recognise each other, but nobody knows them”, as Marie-Christine Bornes Varol explains to us, reminding us that in Turkey today, the motto of the Jews is “to live happily, let’s live in hiding”. A look back at a complex history, which took place in an equally complex geographical area and through a network of different languages. A story of the survival of a scattered micro-society, of which Turkey remains a center.

The Humboldt Forum’s vocation is to host exhibitions on non-European cultures. But this ethnographic museum is now at the center of a controversy over the ownership of artworks and objects obtained during the German colonial empire in Africa and Asia. In this interview with the art historian Horst Bredekamp, we wanted to learn more about a forgotten German ethnographic tradition – and in particular about the contribution of Jewish scholars and collectors within this tradition.

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Thanks to the Paris office of the Heinrich Böll Foundation for their cooperation in the design of the magazine’s website.