Sophie Bessis - Wikipedia
Sophie Bessis
Sophie Bessis (Arabic: صوفي بسيس‎‎ , 1947) is a Tunisian-born French historian, journalist, researcher, and feminist author. She has written numerous works in French, Spanish, and English on development in the Maghreb and the Arab world, as well as the situation of women denouncing the identity imprisonment to which they are subjected. She is the recipient of the Paris Liège literary prize and was honored as Commandeur of the Order of the Republic.
Sophie Bessis
صوفي بسيس
NationalityTunisia, France
AwardsJovellanos International Essay Award (2005)
A history scholar and former editor-in-chief of the weekly magazine Jeune Afrique, she is currently a research associate at the Institute for International and Strategic Relations (IRIS) in Paris and Deputy Secretary General of the International Federation of Rights Leagues (FIDH). She has taught the political economy of development at the Department of Political Science at the Sorbonne and in the Institut national des langues et civilisations orientales (INALCO). She is a consultant for UNESCO and UNICEF, has carried out numerous missions in Africa.
Sophie Bessis was born in Tunis, in 1947. Her family was part of the Jewish upper middle class.[1] She is the daughter of Juliette Bessis, a historian, professor and researcher who specialized in the Maghreb and was a Communist militant; and Aldo Bessis, a trade unionist member of the Union syndicale des travailleurs de Tunisie and an expert of the U.N.Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO).[2][3]
Bessis moved to France in 1975 where she studied history and worked for some time as a journalist. A history specialist, she is the former editor of the weekly, Jeune Afrique. She has been professor of political economy of development in the department of political science at the Sorbonne and in INALCO. As a consultant for UNESCO and UNICEF, she has participated in numerous missions in Africa.[4] She is the director of research at the Institute of International and Strategic Relations (IRIS) of Paris and deputy general secretary of the International Federation for Human Rights (FIDH).
Bessis is the author of numerous works including a biography of Habib Bourguiba with Souhayr Belhassen. In 2007, she published "Los árabes, las mujeres y la libertad" ("Arabs, women and freedom") which reviews the inheritance of the Egyptian reformers of the early twentieth century, or the Bourguiba, that enacted in 1956 a law that freed the Tunisians and analyzes the changes of Arab societies and the disappointments of a badly undertaken modernization connected with the development of the Islamists and the return to an identity based solely on the religious norm. Bessis denounces the identity imprisonment to which women are subjected to in their country and in the Arab world. In 2017, she published Les Valeureuses ou Cinq Tunisiennes dans l’Histoire,[5] in which she vindicates the story of key women in Tunisia, namely Elissa, the founding Phoenician princess of Carthage (also known as Didon), the singer and Jewish actress Habiba Msika who in the 1920s stood out for her transgressive look, Aïcha Sayida Manoubia, the "free saint" of the thirteenth century recognized by the Sufi tradition, Aziza Othmana, legendary Tunisian-Ottoman princess of the seventeenth century, and the feminist Habiba Menchari whose conference in January 1929 against the use of the veil shocked Habib Bourguiba.[5]
In 2017, Bessis announced the donation of her parents' library, a collection of books and newspapers on the history of Tunisia and the Maghreb, to the National Library of Tunis.[6][7]
Selected works
In French
In Spanish
In English
Equal inheritance for daughters is key to Tunisian women's empowerment[10]
See also
Bochra Belhaj Hmida
  1. ^ "Tunisie : Les livres des Bessis offerts à la Bibliothèque nationale – Kapitalis" (in French). Kapitalis. 21 July 2017. Retrieved 28 May 2018.
  2. ^ horchani, salah. "Juliette Bessis, mon professeur qui m'a appris à aimer l'histoire, n'est plus" (in French). Club de Mediapart. Retrieved 28 May 2018.
  3. ^ "L'historienne Juliette Bessis, nous quitte (Gabès 1925 – Paris, 18 mars 2017)". L'Humanité (in French). 21 March 2017. Retrieved 28 May 2018.
  4. ^ "Chercheurs | IRIS". (in French). Retrieved 27 May 2018.
  5. ^ a b "" Les Valeureuses " de Sophie Bessis ou le panthéon féminin de la Tunisie". Le (in French). Retrieved 27 May 2018.
  6. ^ "المؤرّخة التّونسيّة صوفي بسّيس تهدي دار الكتب الوطنيّة مكتبة والديها، جوليات وألدو بسّيس" (in Arabic). Bibliothèque nationale de Tunisie. Retrieved 28 May 2018.
  7. ^ "L'historienne Sophie Bessis fait un don de la bibliothèque de ses parents à la Bibliothèque nationale tunisienne" (in French). Al HuffPost Maghreb. 21 July 2017. Retrieved 28 May 2018.
  8. ^ "Sophie Bessis – Prix littéraire Paris-Liège". (in French). Retrieved 27 May 2018.
  9. ^ "Des compétences tunisiennes décorées des insignes de l'Ordre de la République | Directinfo". Directinfo (in French). Retrieved 27 May 2018.
  10. ^ Bessis, Sophie. "Equal inheritance for daughters is key to Tunisian women's empowerment". alaraby. Retrieved 28 May 2018.
External links
Last edited on 9 April 2021, at 15:02
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