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Josephine Baker to become first Black woman to enter France’s Panthéon

Performer who became part of the French resistance will be entered into the mausoleum in November

Franco-American entertainer Josephine Baker receiving the Légion d’honneur and the Croix de Guerre after the second world war.
Franco-American entertainer Josephine Baker receiving the Légion d’honneur and the Croix de Guerre after the second world war. Photograph: AFP/Getty Image

osephine Baker, a famed French-American dancer, singer and actor who also worked with the French resistance during the second world war, will be entered into the Panthéon mausoleum in November, according to an aide to President Emmanuel Macron.

It will make Baker, who was born in Missouri in 1906 and buried in Monaco in 1975, the first Black woman to be remembered in the hallowed Parisian monument. Her body will remain in Monaco but she will be honoured with a memorial.

A group campaigning for her induction, which included one of Baker’s sons, met Macron on 21 July, Jennifer Guesdon, one of the members, said. “When the president said yes, [it was a] great joy,” she said.

 

Source: https://www.theguardian.com/world/2021/aug/22/josephine-baker-to-become-first-black-woman-to-enter-frances-pantheon?CMP=Share_iOSApp_Other

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