Intermarriage among Jews in France: Preliminary Remarks


Publication Date: December 2003

Publisher: Hadassah-Brandeis Institute

Author(s): Erik H. Cohen

Research Area: Culture and religion; Social conditions

Keywords: Intermarriage; Assimilation; Jewish Identification

Type: Report

Coverage: France


Compared to other Diaspora communities, French exogamy rates are relatively low; but the incidence of intermarriage is rising, especially among the most highly educated segment of the population. Attitudes towards intermarriage are affected by the French Republican position against the formation of distinct ethno-religious communities and so-called communitarian values. Significant differences may be seen between French Jews with Jewish and with non-Jewish spouses or partners on certain aspects of self-identification, behavior, values, and concerns. Those with Jewish partners, in general, are more traditional and religiously observant, more involved in the Jewish community, and have more authoritarian-based values and concerns more closely related to the Jewish community. Those with non-Jewish partners are more independent. They tend to be less involved with the Jewish community and have more universal values and concerns.