François Furet

François Furet, until his death in July 1997, was director of the Institut Raymond Aron at the Ecole des Hautes Etudes en Sciences Sociales in Paris, and also a professor at the Committee on Social Thought at the University of Chicago. In March 1997, he had been elected a member of the Académie Française. An eminent historian who wrote a number of pathbreaking books on the French Revolution, he was also the author of Le passé d’une illusion (1995), a widely discussed study of the idea of communism in the twentieth century.