Was Claude Lévi-Strauss Jewish?

Yes, the great anthropologist who just passed away at age 100, Claude Lévi-Strauss was a Jew and the grandson of a rabbi.

The Times' obituary article describes with great clarity the methodology and substance of his work and the highlights and impact of his career, including the following:
...Claude Lévi-Strauss was born on Nov. 28, 1908, in Belgium to Raymond Lévi-Strauss and the former Emma Levy. He grew up in France, near Versailles, where his grandfather was a rabbi and his father a portrait painter. His great-grandfather Isaac Strauss was a Strasbourg violinist mentioned by Berlioz in his memoirs. As a child, he loved to collect disparate objects and juxtapose them. “I had a passion for exotic curios,” he says in “Conversations.” “My small savings all went to the secondhand shops.” A large collection of Jewish antiquities from his family’s collection, he said, was displayed in the Musée de Cluny; others were looted after France fell to the Nazis in 1940.

From 1927 to 1932, Claude obtained degrees in law and philosophy at the University of Paris, then taught in a local high school, the Lycée Janson de Sailly, where his fellow teachers included Jean-Paul Sartre and Simone de Beauvoir. He later became a professor of sociology at the French-founded University of São Paulo in Brazil...more...

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