web analytics
November 27, 2014 / 5 Kislev, 5775
At a Glance
Sections
Sponsored Post
IDC Herzliya Campus A Day on Campus

To mark IDC Herzliya’s 20th anniversary, we spent a day following Prof. Uriel Reichman, IDC’s founder and president, and Jonathan Davis, VP for External Relations, around its delightful campus.



Home » Sections » Books »

Titles: Antisemitism – Myth And Hate From Antiquity To The Present and The Return Of Anti-Semitism

Title: Antisemitism – Myth And Hate From Antiquity To The Present
Authors: Marvin Perry and Frederick M. Schweitzer
Publisher: Palgrave Macmillan Co., New York, N.Y.

 

Title: The Return Of Anti-Semitism
Author: Gabriel Schoenfeld
Publisher: Encounter Books, New York, N.Y.

 

Of the many books The Jewish Press receives for review, a large number deal with the issue of anti-Semitism. Recently, we presented the preface to Dismantling The Big Lie, published by The Wiesenthal Center, complete and uncut, because it provides specific answers to the calumnies found in The Protocols of The Elders of Zion.

The present two titles, one from a division of St. Martin’s Press, the other from a publishing house affiliated with the American Jewish Committee and Commentary Magazine, both deal with the history of the world’s “obsession.” Each is designed to prevent us from becoming too
comfortable and complacent with our American experience. Our enemies await us – just as hungry lions wait out their prey.

Anti-Semitism may have begun with the image of Jews as “Christ killers” – a myth of a people of criminal elements who, it was implied, were responsible for the death of the symbolic leader of a new religion.

It is a fact of life that humans form groups for all activities. Early societies formed groups for hunting parties as well as for war against other groups. There was always “the other,” and it became the place of the Jews to become greater society’s “Other.” According to Perry and Schweitzer, “Anti-Semitism has very little to do with the actual behavior of Jews or the
strictures of their highly ethical religion … but is rooted in delusionary perceptions that are accepted as authoritative and passed on and embellished from generation to generation.”

Although Christianity venerates Jesus, who was born a Jew and who they claim preached love and compassion, their “New Testament” and other writings of the Church Fathers refer to Jews and Judaism contemptuously, presenting Jews as an accursed people – Children of The Devil – collectively condemned to suffer for rejecting Jesus of Nazareth and responsible for his crucifixion and death. Over two thousand years of invective and hate served to condition Christian European society, in which ordinary lay people were uneducated, illiterate and ignorant, to become receptive to anti-Jewish propaganda and to view Jews as “the Other.” In
European Catholic society, only priests and royalty were educated, able to read an expurgated version of the Bible – both “Old” and “New” Testaments. The only people who knew the truth of the ethical teachings of Judaism were precisely those who profited from the downgraded position of the Jewish nation.

It was not until the 19th-century Enlightenment that some Jews were finally permitted to exit the ghettos. Although others, including Martin Luther, broke with Rome for varying reasons, theological and otherwise, the Catholic Church, which remains the largest Christian denomination, continued to demonize Jews well into the 20th century. It was the ”Nostra
Aetate: A Declaration on the Relationship of the Church to Non-Christian Religions,” published by the Second Vatican Council held in 1962, that began the process of exonerating the Jews and of laying the blame of crucifixion at the feet of the now departed Roman Empire.

While the Perry/Schweitzer book deals with defining the historical origins of anti-Semitism, including chapters on ritual murder accusations (such as baking Christian blood into matzohs, etc.), diabolization (including demons, conspirators and race defilers), Homo Judaicus Economicus (the Jew as Shylock, parasites and plutocrats), Holocaust denial and neo-Nazi
mythology, and the modern anti-Semitic expression in Islamic countries, Schoenfeld’s The Return of Anti-Semitism begins in recent time and discusses modern expressions of anti-Jewish and anti-Zionist hate in the Arab-Moslem countries of the Middle East as well as Europe and America.

Schoenfeld also unabashedly exposes the self-hatred of members of our own tribe, and clearly shows that there is no anti-Semite quite like a Jewish anti-Semite – even if it occasionally parades around like anti-Zionism.

He compliments President George Bush for keeping the United States from being officially represented at the 2001 United Nations World Conference Against Racism in Durban, South Africa, where the main agenda was condemnation of Israel for defending itself against the Arab intifada. He blames “liberal human rights groups” such as Amnesty International and
Human Rights Watch for being insensitive to anti-Semitic and anti-Israel propaganda. From his vantage point as a contributor to Commentary, the AJC’s monthly magazine of ideas and philosophy, he comments on the naiveté of those such as Leon Wieseltier, literary editor of The New Republic, who claims that “talk of a resurgent anti-Semitism is both inapposite and dangerous, a case of fretfulness run amok… The Jewish community in the United States has become sunk in excitability, in the imagination of disaster.”

Return of Anti-Semitism visits the black/Jewish debacle of the late 60′s, during which a carefully constructed edifice of Jewish contribution to African-American causes, including our participation in the Civil Rights movement, funding of legal causes such as Brown vs. Board of Education, founding of the NAACP and other black civil rights organizations – even the
Jewish funding that established the renowned Tuskegee Institute and many other colleges, universities and secondary institutions for African-Americans – came tumbling down over the Ocean Hill-Brownsville/Teacher’s Union and Crown Heights accident fiascos, which were both mismanaged by New York City’s political establishment.

Both books point out that many Arabs – and Christians – victimized the ancestors of today’s substantial African-American community, while canards abound that it was ”the Jews” who enslaved and transported the Africans to Europe and the Americas. The fact that most blacks are also Christians, and regularly imbibe the anti-Semitism of “The New Testament,” has unfortunately helped make us enemies rather than friends.

Antisemitism, Myth and Hate by Perry and Schweitzer does the better job at providing an overview of the greater historical picture over the centuries, while Schoenfeld’s The Return of Anti-Semitism provides a better view of more recent times and issues. But both furnish important insight for the thoughtful reader who wishes to delve further into the issues.
Unfortunately, we all need to learn a bit about what our enemies think about us.

About the Author:


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

No Responses to “Titles: Antisemitism – Myth And Hate From Antiquity To The Present and The Return Of Anti-Semitism”

Comments are closed.

SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Current Top Story
A would-be preacher delivers his message of hate from the Muslim"holy site" on the Temple Mount.
Al Aqsa Mosque ‘Stand-Up’ Preacher Calls for Annihilation of the United States
Latest Sections Stories
Collecting-History-logo

Not as well known, however, is Keller’s involvement with Jewish and Israeli communities.

Rabbi Maurice Lamm

Creativity without clarity is not sufficient for writing. I am eternally thankful to Hashem for his gift to me.

This core idea of memory is very difficult to fully comprehend; however, it is essential.

Sometimes the most powerful countermove one can make when a person is screaming is to calmly say that her behavior is not helpful and then continue interacting with the rest of the family while ignoring the enraged person.

“Two nations are in your womb, and two peoples shall divide within you.”

Divorce from a vindictive, cruel spouse can be a lifelong nightmare when there are offspring.

There were many French Jews who jumped at the chance to shed their ancient identity and assimilate.

As Rabbi Shemtov stood on the stage and looked out at the attendees, he told them that “Rather than take photos with your cellphones, take a mental photo and keep this Shabbat in your mind and take it with you throughout your life.”

Yeshiva v’Kollel Bais Moshe Chaim will be holding a grand celebration on the occasion of the institution’s 40th anniversary on Sunday evening, December 7. Alumni, students, friends and faculty of the yeshiva, also known as Talmudic University of Florida, will celebrate the achievement and vision of its founders and the spiritual guidance of its educational […]

The yeshiva night accommodates all levels of Jewish education.

Recently, Fort Lauderdale has been the focus of international news, and it has not been about the wonderful weather.

Rabbi Sacks held the position of chief rabbi of the United Hebrew Congregations of the Commonwealth for 22 years until September 2013.

More Articles from Aharon Ben Anshel
book-disambiguation

While still a student in a small Midwest college she learns that her aunt in New York has passed away, resulting in her life turning topsy turvy.

book-alex's-wake

Goldsmith himself went on his own “voyage of discovery” to the places where his grandfather and uncle landed and were sent.

Green was an American volunteer in Israel’s 1948 War of Independence, but something happened In Israel that has haunted him ever since.

Witnessed by Theodore Herzl, who was a journalist for a Viennese newspaper covering the trial, the cause célèbre became the spark that eventually caused the rise of the State of Israel in modern times.

These eleven nursing home residents and their accompanying staff from the Connecticut nursing home could represent any of us or our own loved ones…

There are three kinds of travelers: there are tourists, there are businesspeople, and then there are historians like Ben G. Frank.

The last kind doesn’t simply go from here to there. They try to relive history and find the real meaning behind what they experience.

Behind “the news” there’s almost always a story that isn’t being reported, and certain kinds of phenomenon occur almost simultaneously all over the world in almost every era.

Whether this is a memoir or autobiography or whether this book was written as an article of regional diplomacy, King Abdullah does come across in this book as a quite sincere person making a valiant effort at regional diplomacy, who is trying to quell terrorism in the Mideast and raise the social and economic levels of his countrymen.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/sections/titles-antisemitism-myth-and-hate-from-antiquity-to-the-present-and-the-return-of-anti-semitism/2004/05/19/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: