By Denis Guenoun
In this shiny memoir, Denis Guénoun excavates his family's earlier and gradually fills out a portrait of an impressive, enigmatic father. René Guénoun was once a instructor and a pioneer, and his mystery aid for Algerian independence used to be only one of the various issues he didn't seek advice from his teenaged son. To be Algerian, pro-independence, a French citizen, a Jew, and a Communist weren't, to René's brain, dissonant allegiances. He believed Jews and Arabs have been sure by means of an real fraternity and will simply observe a loose destiny jointly.
René Guénoun referred to as himself a Semite, a note that he felt united Jewish and Arab worlds and top mirrored a shared beginning. He additionally believed that Algerians had a similar political rights as Frenchmen. even though his Jewish relatives used to be rooted in Algeria, he inherited French citizenship and respected the rules of the French Revolution. He taught technology in a French lycée in Oran and belonged to the French Communist celebration. His steadfast trust in liberty, equality, and fraternity led him into difficulty, together with legal and exile, but his mess ups as an activist by no means shook his religion in a rational, beneficiant future.
René Guénoun used to be drafted to shield Vichy France's colonies within the center East in the course of global warfare II. even as, Vichy barred him and his spouse from instructing simply because they have been Jewish. whilst the British conquered Syria, he was once despatched domestic to Oran, and in 1943, after the Allies captured Algeria, he joined the unfastened French military and fought in Europe. After the warfare, either mom and dad did their most sensible to reconcile militant unionism and clandestine get together job with the calls for of labor and relations. The Guénouns had no real interest in Israel and regarded themselves at domestic in Algeria; but simply because he supported Algerian independence, René Guénoun outraged his French friends and was once expelled from Algeria by means of the French paramilitary corporation Armée Secrète. He spent his ultimate years in Marseille. Gracefully weaving jointly younger thoughts with study into his father's lifestyles and occasions, Denis Guénoun re-creates an Algerian prior that proved gorgeous, intellectually provocative, and dangerous.