J. Russell Major Prize Recipients
The J. Russell Major Prize was established in 2000 by Mrs. Blair Major, in memory of her husband, a distinguished scholar of French history who served on the history faculty at Emory University from 1949 until his retirement in 1990. The prize is awarded annually for the best work in English on any aspect of French history.
2016 Major Prize
Ethan B. Katz, Univ. of Cincinnati
The Burdens of Brotherhood: Jews and Muslims from North Africa to France (Harvard Univ. Press)
Ethan Katz’s The Burdens of Brotherhood winds us through the tortured, but always complex relationships between French immigrant Jews and Muslims since the First World War. Sad, even haunting, this deeply researched work, while elucidating the forces that polarized, takes us into the daily communities where Jews and Muslims also lived together, played music and soccer together, shopped together, and sustained shared traditions from their common North African heritage. Imaginatively open to contingency as well as to the fissures of history, and commanding in its use of sources, Katz has given us a rich, often surprising portrait of the dynamics that sundered two immigrant peoples with reason to see themselves so much alike. It is a book of immediacy because of the power of its historical analysis.