The Introduction explores the meaning and significance of universalism in the French context, particularly as it relates to the question of minority difference. It then lays out the book's main arguments: that French universalism has a history, that universalist discourse has often focused on Jews, and that the universal and the particular have not always been as opposed as many now take them to be. Rather than seeking to graft an Anglo-American notion of liberal pluralism onto the French context, the introduction reveals the existence of a form of pluralism at the core of the French universalist tradition. It opposes critics both on the left and the right by suggesting the advantages of recovering this largely forgotten pluralistic form of French universalism.
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