In October 1944, Jean-Paul Sartre penned a sociological and historical analysis of French anti-Semitism. Published in excerpts on the pages of Les Temps Modernes in 1945 and in its entirety in the following year, Réflexions sur la question juive1 displeased both Jewish and non-Jewish readers alike: the non-Jews for being taken to task for their anti-Jewish sentiments, the Jews for Sartre’s ignorance of their history and culture.2

The essay reflected Sartre’s dismay that just weeks after the liberation non-Jewish Frenchmen not only continued their prewar animosities towards their Jewish compatriots but responded with silence to the tragic cataclysm that the Jews had suffered during the war.