Intellectual maverick takes helm of Center for European and Russian Studies

Published: November 19, 2015

As the new director of the Center for European and Russian Studies, Laure Murat, with great sadness, is now thinking through ways to organize a program in response to the horrific attacks on her hometown.

Laure Murat didn’t start out with ambitions to become a university professor.

“I hated school,” recalls the Paris native, “I was a very bad student in high school — I just did my baccalauréat” — the rough equivalent of completing a year of college in the U.S. — “and that was it.”

That’s not to say Murat wasn’t intellectually inclined; she was just fiercely independent with wide-ranging interests. So she became a journalist and an art critic, working for Beaux Arts magazine and the “France Culture” public radio program.

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