France Honors André Schiffrin

November 18, 2011 | By French Culture

New York, —On 16th November 2011, the government of France conferred on André Schiffrin the insignia of Chevalier of the Legion of Honor, presented to him by Ambassador Delattre.

André Schiffrin is currently the founding director of The New Press, where he has worked since 1990 as director and editor-in-chief. Before then, starting in 1962, he was for twenty-eight years the managing director and editor-in-chief of Pantheon Books at Random House. Among the authors Schiffrin brought to Pantheon and with whom he has worked are Studs Terkel, Eric Hobsbawm, E. P. Thompson, Marguerite Duras, Anita Brookner, Michel Foucault, Nathan Huggins, Simone de Beauvoir, Noam Chomsky, John Dower, Roy Medvedev, Robert Frank, F. R. Leavis, Julio Cortázar, Gunnar Myrdal, Ivan Illich, George Kennan, Sissela Bok, and R. D. Laing.

Schiffrin was for many years a member of the board of the New York Civil Liberties Union, the Freedom to Publish Committee of the American Association of Publishers, and its anti-censorship committee, the Freedom to Read Committee. He is the author of The Business of Books, translated in twenty-one countries; Le Contrôle de la Parole, published in 2005 in Europe; A Political Education, a memoir published in 2007; and, most recently, Words and Money.

Schiffrin served as a visiting lecturer for two years at Yale University, from which he graduated summa cum laude in 1957. He also received a master’s degree with highest honors from Cambridge University in England, which he attended on a Clare Fellowship, and where he was the first American to edit Granta, then the University’s literary magazine. He has written articles for The New York Times Book Review, The New Republic, The Nation, The Chronicle of Higher Education, and numerous European magazines.

Schiffrin was born in Paris in 1935, and came with his parents to the United States in 1940, after the fall of France. He was raised in New York City, where he currently lives half the year, living the other half in Paris.

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