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Sun Nov 28, 2021, 08:10 AM

Josephine Baker, 1st Black woman honored in French Pantheon

Source: AP

By ARNO PEDRAM and SYLVIE CORBET

PARIS (AP) — France is inducting Josephine Baker — Missouri-born cabaret dancer, French World War II spy and civil rights activist — into its Pantheon, the first Black woman honored in the final resting place of France’s most revered luminaries.

On Tuesday, a coffin carrying soils from the U.S., France and Monaco — places where Baker made her mark — will be deposited inside the domed Pantheon monument overlooking the Left Bank of Paris. Her body will stay in Monaco, at the request of her family.

French President Emmanuel Macron decided on her entry into the Pantheon, responding to a petition lobbying for her “pantheonization.” In addition to honoring an exceptional figure in French history, the move is meant to send a message against racism and celebrate U.S.-French connections.

“She embodies, before anything, women’s freedom,” Laurent Kupferman, the author of the petition for the move, told The Associated Press.



FILE - Performer Josephine Baker strikes a pose during her Ziegfeld Follies performance of "The Conga" on the Winter Garden Theater stage in New York, Feb. 11, 1936. France is inducting Josephine Baker – Missouri-born cabaret dancer, French Resistance fighter and civil rights leader – into its Pantheon, the first Black woman honored in the final resting place of France's most revered luminaries. (AP Photo, File)


Read more: https://apnews.com/article/entertainment-france-paris-race-and-ethnicity-europe-b1933ec947e872553166ce9ef418bad6

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Reply Josephine Baker, 1st Black woman honored in French Pantheon (Original post)
Omaha Steve Nov 28 OP
lapucelle Nov 28 #1
DURHAM D Nov 28 #4
niyad Nov 28 #5
bahboo Nov 28 #8
malthaussen Nov 28 #2
lapucelle Nov 28 #6
erronis Nov 28 #9
IrishAfricanAmerican Nov 28 #3
BumRushDaShow Nov 28 #7
burrowowl Nov 28 #10

Response to Omaha Steve (Original post)

Sun Nov 28, 2021, 08:29 AM

1. Seven Surprising Things You Probably Didn't Know about Josephine Baker

Despite being a daughter of St. Louis, MO, for many years Josephine Baker was a virtually unknown name to the average American. These days, as we have come to learn more about Black history and its figures, Ms. Baker has come to be regarded as one of the most dynamic and influential people in history, a fact that France, her beloved adopted country, has known for a century.

After almost a decade of advocacy by her family, the French President, Emmanuel Marcon, has finally agreed to move Ms. Baker’s remains to the Pantheon Mausoleum at the end of the month on November 30th, where French luminaries such as Victor Hugo, Voltaire and Marie Curie are among those buried. This will make Josephine the first Black woman to receive such an honour and only the sixth woman overall. It’s just one in a lifetime of many firsts that Josephine Baker will have accomplished on her fascinating but tumultuous road to becoming an entertainment icon. So without further ado, a few things you probably didn’t know about Ms. Baker ….

https://www.messynessychic.com/2021/11/25/seven-surprising-things-you-probably-didnt-know-about-josephine-baker/

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They say beyond the seas,
There beneath the pale sky,

There exists a city, an enchanted escape.
And under the big black trees,
each night,
Towards it go all my hopes.

I have two loves.
My country and Paris.
Always by these two
My heart is delighted.

Manhattan is beautiful,
But what good to deny it:
What bewitches me, is Paris,
it's only Paris.
To see it one day,
that's my dearest wish.
I have two loves,
My country and Paris.

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March on Washington had one female speaker: Josephine Baker

Josephine Baker is perhaps best remembered as a glamorous showgirl in 1920s and ’30s Paris who mothballed her skimpy costumes to serve in the French Resistance before becoming an international superstar. She was also the only woman to speak at the March on Washington.

Wearing her Free French uniform with her Legion of Honor decoration, the 57-year-old Baker had flown in from France, her adopted homeland, for the occasion. She had not been wanted at the event by all of its organizers, several of whom thought the girl from St. Louis had become a woman of France, out of touch with U.S. civil rights issues. But Baker was friendly with the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr., and her managers worked to get her on the program.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/lifestyle/style/march-on-washington-had-one-female-speaker-josephine-baker/2011/08/08/gIQAHqhBaJ_story.html

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Response to lapucelle (Reply #1)

Sun Nov 28, 2021, 10:31 AM

4. Thank you for this post.

I did not know she participated in the March.

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Response to lapucelle (Reply #1)

Sun Nov 28, 2021, 10:38 AM

5. Thank you for this wonderful information about this

truly remarkable woman.

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Response to lapucelle (Reply #1)

Sun Nov 28, 2021, 02:19 PM

8. What a life...man....

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Response to Omaha Steve (Original post)

Sun Nov 28, 2021, 09:17 AM

2. Gee, didn't take too long at all!

Why, there are probably still a few living people who remember her!

-- Mal

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Response to malthaussen (Reply #2)

Sun Nov 28, 2021, 11:21 AM

6. It's a BFD.

Interment in the crypt of the Panthéon is severely restricted and is allowed only by a parliamentary act for "National Heroes". Similar high honours exist in Les Invalides for historical military leaders such as Napoléon, Turenne and Vauban.

Among those buried in its necropolis are Voltaire, Rousseau, Victor Hugo, Émile Zola, Jean Moulin, Louis Braille, Jean Jaurès and Soufflot, its architect. In 1907 Marcellin Berthelot was buried with his wife Mme Sophie Berthelot. Marie Curie was interred in 1995, the first woman interred on merit. Geneviève de Gaulle-Anthonioz and Germaine Tillion, heroines of the French resistance, were interred in 2015. Simone Veil was interred in 2018, and her husband Antoine Veil was interred alongside her so that they would not be separated.

snip==========================================================================

On 30 November 2002, in an elaborate but solemn procession, six Republican Guards carried the coffin of Alexandre Dumas (1802–1870), the author of The Three Musketeers and other famous novels, to the Panthéon. Draped in a blue-velvet cloth inscribed with the Musketeers' motto "Un pour tous, tous pour un" ("One for all, all for one" ), the remains had been transported from their original interment site in the Cimetière de Villers-Cotterêts in Aisne, France. In his speech, President Jacques Chirac stated that an injustice was being corrected with the proper honouring of one of France's greatest authors.

In January 2007, President Jacques Chirac unveiled a plaque in the Panthéon to more than 2,600 people recognised as Righteous Among the Nations by the Yad Vashem memorial in Israel for saving the lives of Jews who would otherwise have been deported to concentration camps. The tribute in the Panthéon underlines the fact that around three-quarters of the country's Jewish population survived the war, often thanks to ordinary people who provided help at the risk of their own life.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Panth%C3%A9on#People_interred_or_commemorated

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Josephine Baker with her foster children.

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Response to lapucelle (Reply #6)

Sun Nov 28, 2021, 03:31 PM

9. Thank you for these details. I love your name - so many possibilities

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/La_Pucelle

Frequently the french slang gets translated into something that the english recognize (and versa-vica). I still think "shampooing" and "flirting" are great examples of language police going bad.

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Response to Omaha Steve (Original post)

Sun Nov 28, 2021, 09:45 AM

3. Wonderful!

A well deserved honor!




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Response to Omaha Steve (Original post)

Sun Nov 28, 2021, 01:40 PM

7. Congrats to her

for this honor in her adopted country.

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Response to Omaha Steve (Original post)

Sun Nov 28, 2021, 09:43 PM

10. When we were in Spain we had

a nanny who had worked for her and she said it was wonderful and all the children she had adopted. It is a shame what she had to go through in the US.

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