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Jacques Attali

Related: music theory - France

Biography

Jacques Attali (born 1943) is a French economist and scholar. From 1981 to 1991, he was a French presidential adviser as a part of the country's socialist experiment.

In April 1991 he became the first President of the London-based European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, the financial institution established by western governments to assist the countries of eastern and central Europe and the former Soviet Union in their transition to democratic market economies. He was forced to leave this position in July 1993 following a major scandal.

Attali is perhaps best known in America as the author of Noise: The Political Economy of Music,which bears a foreward by Frederic Jameson and afterward by Susan McClary. -- http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jacques_Attali [Jan 2006]

Bruits: essai sur l'economie politique de la musique/Noise: The Political Economy of Music (1977) - Jacques Attali

Bruits: essai sur l'economie politique de la musique/Noise: The Political Economy of Music (1977) - Jacques Attali [Amazon.com] [FR] [DE] [UK]

When Jacques Attali's spectacular book Noise: The Political Economy of Music was first published [in 1977 in French and] in translation by the University of Minnesota in 1985 (as volume 16 in its "Theory and History of Literature" series) -- and every time the book was reprinted, which happened five times between 1985 and 1996 -- it came carefully wrapped. In front of it was Frederic Jameson's seven-page-long "Foreword," and after it was Susan McClary's nine-page-long "Afterword." Such thick wrapping for a book so thin (only 148 pages and four chapters long)! And such heavy people to put the wrapping on it, too: Jameson, identified simply by the book jacket as William A. Lane Jr., Professor of Comparative Literature at Duke University, was at the time America's best-known Marxist academic; and McClary, identified as professor of musicology at the University of California at Los Angeles, was a rising star in academic feminist music theory (today she is a star).

See also: noise

Les Juifs, le Monde et l'Argent (2002) - Jacques Attali

    Les Juifs, le Monde et l'Argent (2002) - Jacques Attali [Amazon.com] [FR] [DE] [UK]

    The historical background is common knowledge. Jews were prevented from engaging in agriculture or working as artisans, with fields reserved for members of the professional guilds, and instead forced to loan money an economic activity forbidden to the Church faithful. But Attali takes the history lesson up a notch by arguing that Jews engaged in financial affairs because they were eternal wanderers: From the expulsion of Adam and Eve from Paradise and the Mark of Cain, through the journeys of the Patriarchs between the Euphrates and the Nile and the Israelites wandering through the Sinai Desert on their way to the Promised Land, to the exile of the Jews from their homeland and their dispersion among the nations of the world, money has always been the Jewish people's highly portable instrument of survival. And this wandering, Attali argues, may be responsible for another feature of Jewish life: the belief in one God. A nation continually on the move had no time or opportunity to become involved with the statues of a multitude of gods or for adopting the gods of the places where it briefly sojourned. --YOEL SHER

    See also: Jew

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