KARPEL, HERMAN (1864–1942), French trade unionist. Karpel emigrated from Russia to France and in 1896 was co-founder of the cap-makers' union, the first Jewish trade union in France. Until 1914 Karpel played an active part in the Jewish labor movement in France. At the height of the *Dreyfus Affair in 1898, Karpel published a pamphlet entitled: "Le Proletariat Juif. Lettre des ouvriers Juifs de Paris au Parti Socialiste Fran-çais," which was an appeal by French Jewish workers to their non-Jewish comrades to join the fight against antisemitism. The pamphlet also pointed out the danger of ignoring antisemitism and the mistake in the belief that the Jewish people consisted entirely of capitalists.
Z. Szajkowski, Etyudn tsu der Geshikhte fun Ayngevandertn Yidishn Yishuv in Frankraykh, 2 vols. (1936–37), index; idem, Di Profesyonele Bavegung Tsvishn di Yidishe Arbeter in Frankraykh biz 1914 (1937); E. Tcherikower and Z. Szajkowski, in: Yidn in Frankraykh, 2 (1942), 163–92.
Source: Encyclopaedia Judaica. © 2008 The Gale Group. All Rights Reserved.