The Alliance Israélite Universelle created in 2011 the European Institute Emmanuel Levinas, a college for high education. It follows the ideology of the founding fathers who united the spirit of Judaism with the ideas of the 1789 French Revolution in their call for the foundation of the Alliance in 1860:
“If you believe that the most ancient and simplest of the spiritual religions must be kept in place, fulfill her mission, proclaim her rights, show her liveliness in the ever changing movement of ideas, in the theoretical struggle, more and more fiery, of modern societies …”
The college is placed under the aegis of the philosopher Emmanuel Levinas, who was dedicated to this educational goal, and for 35 years directed the School for Teachers of the Alliance‘s schools network: the Ecole Normal Israélite Orientale (ENIO).
The European Institute Emmanuel Levinas‘s goal is to bring Jewish Studies to the highest academic international level, and to detach them from the “morbid” atmosphere mentioned by the historian and philosopher Gershom Sholem, when he talked about courses and lectures given in the standard frame of European universities.
The European Institute Emmanuel Levinas, is internationally oriented even though mainly based on the French language. It was created and is directed by Gérard Rabinovitch, professor, writer, philosopher and CNRS researcher. The College, in the spirit of AIU’s high education, aims to teach “Biblical and Jewish Humanities”, with reference to and in dialogue with “Greco-Latin Humanities” of French and French speaking scholarly tradition.