Archives of Paul M.G. Lévy

  • Access: The fonds Paul Lévy can be freely accessed during the opening hours of the reading room. Reservation.
  • Reproduction:  The content of the fonds may be freely reproduced in the reading room. Practical information for requesting a reproduction by CegeSoma personnel can be found here.
  • Finding aids: Inventory AA763

Fonds description:

Paul Michel Gabriel Lévy (Ixelles 1910 - Sainte-Ode 2002) was a journalist, commercial engineer and professor at University of Leuven. He played a key role in the history of the Belgian radio broadcaster, as he produced many reports and served as the head of the information department.

In 1940, Paul Lévy refused to work for Radio Bruxelles, the institution set up by the occupant at the premises of INR in Brussels.  He would soon get arrested and incarcerated in Breendonck. He was liberated in November 1941 and managed to flee to London in July 1942. Paul Lévy was the founder of the Samyède project, an Attaché at the cabinet of the Information Minister, and collaborator at the Belgian Commission for the Study of Post-War Problems (Commission belge pour l’étude des problèmes d’après-guerre). He was also a war correspondent in 1945, and the first Western journalist to enter the Soviet Zone.

Paul Lévy first leaned towards socialism, but started advocating for Union démocratique belge after the Liberation and got elected in the constituency of Nivelles in 1946. He would soon resign and resume his radio work. He later became the information director of the Council of Europe and professor at the universities of Strasbourg and Leuven.

Paul M.G. Lévy has bequeathed his archives to CegeSoma in two steps: first in 1970-1971, and second in September 1997. The documents that compose the fonds mainly concern the activities of Paul Lévy during the Second World War and the first six post-war years.

The documents about the period prior to 1945 are quite varied. They are transcripts of radio reports produced by Paul Lévy, correspondence regarding his professional life, reports for the Information Ministry, and various documents about the Belgian Commission for the Study of Post-War Problems.

For the period after 1945, a significant part of the documents are about the “Fraternelle Samoyède”. Many also concern his activities at the Belgian Commissariat for Repatriation (Commissariat belge au Rapatriement), in particular letters of persons asking for help in their search for missing relatives. Finally, the fonds contains documents about the International Tracing Service (Service international de recherche - SIR), press clippings, and correspondence with various associations of former resistance fighters or political prisoners, etc.

For more information :

  • Dujardin, Jean. "Belgique" Edited by Hélène Eck. La Guerre Des Ondes : Histoire Des Radios de Langue Française Pendant La Deuxième Guerre Mondiale. Paris: Armand Colin, 1985.
  • Rase, Céline. Des Ondes Impures à l’épuration Des Ondes. Contribution à l’histoire de La Radio, Des Collaborations et Des Répressions En Belgique (1939-1950). Namur: Presses universitaires de Namur, 2017.
  • Rase, Céline. "Radio Bruxelles Au Pilori". Des Ondes Impures à l’épuration Des Ondes. Contribution à l’histoire de La Radio, Des Collaborations et Des Répressions En Belgique (1939-1950). Ph.D. Thesis, Université de Namur, 2016.
  • Ricquier, Jean-Claude. “Entretien avec le professeur Paul M.G. Lévy : de la Première Guerre mondiale à septembre 1944".  In  La Revue générale / sous la direction de Henri Davignon, Auguste Mélot et Louis de Lichtervelde [et alii].  Bruxelles : Goemaere, Ed. Universelle.
  • Ghislain, Lhoir. La mission Samoyède : les maquisards de la Radio Nationale Belge, 1940-1944. Bruxelles : Didier Hatier, 1984.
  • Eck, Hélène. La guerre des ondes. Histoire des radios de langue française pendant la Deuxième Guerre mondiale. Parijs/ Lausanne/ Brussel/ Montréal : Armond Colin-Payot-Complexe-Hurtubise HMH, 1985.