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Henry Rousso (born 1954 in Cairo) is an Egyptian-born French historian specializing in World War II France.

Early lifeEdit

Henry Rousso was born in 1954 in Cairo, Egypt. He emigrated to France with his family in 1956 due to the rise of antisemitism in Egypt.[1] He studied at the École normale supérieure de Saint-Cloud, the Sorbonne, and the Institut d'Etudes Politiques de Paris.


Rousso's notable work includes a seminal book on Vichy France entitled The Vichy Syndrome (1987) where he coined a phrase commonly used to describe the era, passé qui ne passe pas ("past that doesn't pass"[2] - the expression was possibly inspired by Ernst Nolte's June 6, 1986 article entitled Die Vergangenheit, die nicht vergehen will — "The past that does not want to pass away").

Rousso currently serves as Director of Research at the French National Centre for Scientific Research (CNRS) with which he has been involved since 1981.[3]

On February 22, 2017,[4] Rousso was detained by U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) agents[5] for 10 hours on arrival at George Bush Intercontinental Airport in Houston and nearly deported. He had come to give a talk at Texas A&M University[1] and was detained because he was entering the country on a tourist visa and was being paid a stipend for the talk. The Customs and Border Protection agent was unaware that such stipends are allowed for scholars.[5]


  1. ^ a b "U.S. authorities almost deport French Jewish Holocaust era scholar". Jewish Telegraphic Agency. February 25, 2017. Retrieved February 26, 2017.
  2. ^ "The Occupation, the French State, and Business (book review) - BUSINESS HISTORY REVIEW - Donald Reid" (PDF).
  3. ^ "Institut d'histoire du temps présent - IHTP - Rousso Henry". Archived from the original on 2007-06-25. Cite uses deprecated parameter |dead-url= (help)
  4. ^ Rousso, Henry (February 27, 2017). "Is The United States Still The United States?". The Huffington Post. Retrieved March 1, 2017. On February 22, I was arrested at 2:30 p.m. at the George Bush Intercontinental Airport in Houston landing from Paris.
  5. ^ a b Erin McCann "French Historian Says He Was Threatened with Deportation at Houston Airport" The New York Times, February 27, 2017.