When did antisemitism start?

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garlock
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Re: When did antisemitism start?

Post by garlock » 12 Jul 2009 04:10

phylo_roadking wrote:
Once nationalism became an issue, the integration became less and the separatism became more.


But that only explains 1948 to the present day - or at most 1919 to the present day. And only in the British Mandate/modern state of Israel, in the context of Palestinian vs. Jew. It doesn't really have any bearing on historical anti-semitism...and all those centuries when the Jews were socially/politically scattered across Euorpe and later the New World.


I'm looking at this again. In the beginning nationalism, along with a new religion which held itself superior to others, caused the Hebrews/Israelites to be at odds with people. They founded a nation on conquered territory.

Then, after losing the nation, the Jews experienced the diaspora, during which time there was not nationalism to fuel anti-Jewish prejudice but rather the usual accusations of Christ-killers and the other areas we have already noted.

Then, in 1860, the term "antisemitism" was coined by a Jewish author to describe prejudice against the Jews, prejudice based upon the reasons given in the previous paragraph.

Then, subsequent to 1860, at some point, the genetic/racial inferiority charge came into being, was added to the mix of other prejudices, and thus antisemitism became what we know in Nazi Germany.

Meanwhile, as a result of decisions made after WWl, Jews and Palestinians were both deluded by the British about the dispensation of Palestine, thus exacerbating the nationalistic aspect of Judaism, which had for some time been, somewhat nascently it is true, alive via Zionism.

When the UN renamed "Palestine" "Israel," in 1949, that action put nationalism on the front burner as a reason for anti-jewish feeling: an historical circle, as we can see, and this Palestinian conflict has been the major focus on Jews in the world's eyes since.

So, now, since state antisemetism died with the Nazis (I'm sure someone will find exceptions to this), antisemitism is no longer strong as the racial/behaviorial combination but has come back for many people to being as it was during the diaspora, mainly a behaviorally-based prejudice against the Jews.

But the Palestinians do not, I think, view their anti-Jewish sentiment racially or behaviorally but as a nationalistic issue, as it was in the beginning. Perhaps, then, we have come to a point in history where we don't have, as a major problem, antisemitism. Rather, now, as in the days of Moses, et al, we have anti-Jewish prejudice and anti-Jewish nationalistic conflict as the larger issues, and antisemitism is not truly an accurate term for what most people who are prejudiced against Jews are feeling because the racial aspect is not there.

That Paul Johnson book, by the way, The History of the Jews is very good. I've read it. He does an excellent one on America, as well.

John

Dili
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Re: When did antisemitism start?

Post by Dili » 12 Jul 2009 05:44

But the Palestinians do not, I think, view their anti-Jewish sentiment racially or behaviorally but as a nationalistic issue, as it was in the beginning. Perhaps, then, we have come to a point in history where we don't have, as a major problem, antisemitism.


Well i don't want to open a can of worms but i don't have any doubt that the issue is racial/religious maybe even more than territorial. There Hachemite Tribe(that was defeated by Saudi Tribe) rules a part of Palestine right now as compensation to have been expelled from their homeland. PLO when got an oportunity tried to takeover it and ended with Black September.

In Europe there were a couple of countries that because were formed late arrived late to colonisation, Germany and Italy being good examples. The elite trying to Compete with France and Great Britain had to justify the expenses and investments in building an Empire. One of those narratives was to Govern the non-civilized peoples, putting the racial aspects in mainstream. While Italy was a land that had many leaders and cultures Germany had not that. There is also Martin Luther.

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Re: When did antisemitism start?

Post by South » 12 Jul 2009 07:48

Good morning John,

Preface;

Circa WWI and later, Jews in the Ottoman territory and then the British mandate were also known as "Palestinians". The Jewish area newspaper was named the "Palestine Post" (now "Jerusalem Post"). The Jewish Palestinians were like the local Christian "Palestinians" and local Muslim Palestinians. There were also some local Arab "seculars" (to include a Communist party [later named "Dash" and even later "Hadash" -many Jewish members also]). Today, by fiat, some refer to the local Jews as Israelis and local descendents of the Palestinian Muslims (and the secular and the Christian) as "Palestinians". There is a large blend to the demographic segments.

............

After WWI, Palestinian Jews and the diaspora Jews were NOT "deluded" by the British..." At the Woodrow Wilson home in Stanton, Virginia (a museum/historic site now) are framed newspaper pictures and articles showing the Jewish delegation and Arab delegation to the post war conferences. These teams were knowledgable and experienced.

Nationalism was exacerbated because the US sought to keep the new USSR away from the eastern Med because it was too close to the Saudi oil fields.

"Palestine" was the name given to the British mandate. Palestine had not been specifically defined (looking at Ottoman maps is a good reason!) The Brits and French developed guidelines under Sykes-Picot to determine borders (I am being serious) for Lebanon, Syria and Iraq. What remained, by default, constituted the Palestine mandate.

In March, 1921, at Cairo, Colonial Secretary Winston Churchill held a meeting dividing the Palestinian mandate. East of a line from the Jordan River south to Aqaba was designated Transjordan. This area the British excluded from the "Jewish national home". West of the Jordan River Aqaba line were areas for Palestinian Jews to acquire after the mandate "expired". I recall this area was 2 triangles of territory where Palestinian Jews lived at the time. (The triangles, less the apex connection, became a territorial mass after the 1948 fighting stopped. (US Ambassador as a UN representative, Ralph Bunche, oversaw the armistice on the island of Rhodes)

"In the beginning" there wasn't a complete issue of nationalism against the Jews (less outside political forces exploiting the fissure). There were 5 waves of Jewish immigrants to this new area post WWI. Some of the "waves" involved hiring local "Palestinian Arabs" (ie not Jews). No nationalism was expressed; it was somewhat peaceful. The "waves" that used only Jewish labor for jobs did create tensions partly expressed as "nationalism".

The best book I've read on all this - and I've read many - is:

"THE SIEGE: The Saga of Israel and Zionism", Conor Cruise O'Brien, 1986, ISBN: 0-671-60044-3.

The author was Irish Ambasador to the UN. Believe he died only a few months ago.


Warm regards,

Bob

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Re: When did antisemitism start?

Post by michael mills » 12 Jul 2009 07:52

It's time to bring some light into the darkness.

The German word "Antisemitismus", of which the English "anti-Semitism" is merely a translation, was coined for the purpose of defining a political movement, which had as its goal putting an end to the spread of Jewish influence ("Semitismus") in Germany, and its eradication from German political, economic and cultural life.

Any use of the word in any sense other than to denote an anti-Jewish political movement, such as for example National Socialism was, is strictly speaking an improper and misleading use. If the intention is to denote an anti-Jewish attitude or emotion, the term "judeophobia" is more exact.

The word "Semitismus" was coined by Wilhelm Marr, a former German revolutionary, to denote the quality of Jewishness, or the Jewish spirit or influence, which he saw as alien to the German spirit, nature or character. He chose the word "Semitismus" rather than a term denoting Judaism in order to express the idea that what made Jews alien to the Germanic spirit was not their religion, but rather their ethnic or "racial" origin.

It was in the 19th Century that the concept of "race", in the biological sense of a group of related individuals having common characteristics, both physical and mental, determined by their "blood". It was in that century that the terms "Aryan" and "Semitic", which hitherto had denoted language groups and the peoples who spoke those languages, began to be used to denote supposed "races". Thus, it was theorised that there existed a Semitic "race", whose spiritual and mental characteristics were quite different to those of a putative Aryan "race", with the result that the two races were alien to each other and could never blend. It was held that Jews, because of their origin, belonged to the Semitic "race", and therefore they were eternally alien to the Germanic peoples and could never become part of them.

Thus, "anti-Semitism" in the true sense of the word, began in the 1880s in Germany, where the "anti-Semitic" political movement first emerged.

Earlier uses of the word "anti-Semitic" are purely descriptive, and do not denote a political movement or an ideology. They denote simply a negative attitude to "Semitic" culture or civilisation.

Of course, conflict between Jews and other peoples, and hence judeophobia, a negative attitude toward Jews, have existed for a very long time. Judeophobia is in essence simply the mirror image of Jewish hostility toward gentiles, which is a core element of the Judaic religion; it has throughout history been a natural reaction of gentile peoples who have come in contact with Jews and have become aware of the hostility and contempt preached toward them by the Judaic religion. Thus Judeophobia, was found among Egyptians at least as early as the 4th century BC.

Dili
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Re: When did antisemitism start?

Post by Dili » 12 Jul 2009 09:13

Just to stop your high mirror horse of what reflects what i have some got some good chunks of contempt along my life. It was all because i didn't wanted to go along in the bandwagon.
Of course for what is essencial Socialist Communitarist Nationalist underpinings of most societies that is a crime.Rarer more smarter people understand that difference increases survival prospects and redundancy. This economic bubble exploded because there weren't enough contrarians with "contempt" and "hostility" that put the prices at more sane levels...

garlock
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Re: When did antisemitism start?

Post by garlock » 12 Jul 2009 12:49

Hello all,
I'm off on an excursion with the family, so no time to digest this mass of erudition now. This is a very interesting thread.

warm regards,
John

garlock
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Re: When did antisemitism start?

Post by garlock » 12 Jul 2009 20:57

Hi Bob,
I felt that the Arabs were not treated fairly at the League of Nations, despite their sophisticated negotiators. Because the British had promised both the Arabs and the Jews independent homelands, there became a dichotomy. No matter that Transjordan went to Arabs, there was still the fact that Palestinian Arabs were ousted and fled from Palestine when the UN named it Israel in 1949. In the intermim period between WW1 and the UN action, both Arabs and Jews conducted terrorist attacks against the British for what they perceived as double dealing.

The Arabs got protectorates after World War 1 when they had been promised independent nations. One cannot say that the British or any of the allies in World War 1 dealt squarely with either the Jews or the Arabs.

regards,

John

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Re: When did antisemitism start?

Post by David Thompson » 13 Jul 2009 00:01

Readers interested in late 19th and early 20th century antisemitism in Europe might find useful some of the links given here:

Newly-available e-texts: Antisemitic pogroms
viewtopic.php?f=6&t=145316

paolosilv
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Re: When did antisemitism start?

Post by paolosilv » 13 Jul 2009 05:57

"Judeophobia, a negative attitude toward Jews, have existed for a very long time. Judeophobia is in essence simply the mirror image of Jewish hostility toward gentiles, which is a core element of the Judaic religion; it has throughout history been a natural reaction of gentile peoples who have come in contact with Jews and have become aware of the hostility and contempt preached toward them by the Judaic religion. Thus Judeophobia, was found among Egyptians at least as early as the 4th century BC."

How simple he makes it all seem, yet it is not quite accurate. Judeophobia was preached by the early Christians, most of whom were themselves Jews, and who were preaching a doctrine that the Jews could not tolerate, that the laws of the Book had become obsolete, and that the Jews should accept the new teachings of Jesus of Nazareth. How does one explain that away as Judeophobia? It's simply not the case.

Judeophobia, as defined, also existed among the ancient pagan Romans, who wanted to impose their empire on Israel and Judea. They felt such contempt for the Jews that after they destroyed the Temple in 70 AD, they renamed the lands "Palestine" in honor of the Philistines. They also carted away Jews as slaves to build their pagan buildings, as demonstrated by the monument to the Roman Titus, which explicitly shows Jewish slaves being paraded through polytheistic Rome.

The Christians also continued this tradition of official Judeophobia, or anti-Judaism, once that religion became the religion of the Empire. None of this can be explained by 'a natural reaction to Jews'" own hostility to others. On the contrary, throughout history there have been exchanges by the merchant-oriented Jews with their neighbors, as demonstrated by the conversions both ways throughout history, and by the scholarly exchanges between Jews and Ancient Greeks.

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Re: When did antisemitism start?

Post by michael mills » 13 Jul 2009 06:40

Yet another rant from Paolosilv, demonstrating his historical ignorance.

As I wrote, judeophobia existed in Egypt from at least the 4th Century BC. In that century, the first Greek ruler of Egypt, Ptolemy I, commissioned an Egyptian priest called Manetho (a name with which I dare say Paolosilv is totally unfamiliar) to write for him a history of Egypt from the earliest times up until the conquest by Alexander. Manetho's history is not preserved, but a lot of its material is preserved in other ancient sources, and our knowledge of Ancient Egyptian history is based largely on Maetho's original history. For example, the traditional division of the Egyptian rulers into dynasties was an invention by Manetho.

At the time Manetho was writing, there was already a considerable Jewish population in Egypt, particularly concentrated in Alexandria, and Manetho shows a large degree of antipathy towards Jews. His history included an Egyptian version of the Exodus story, according to which the ruler of Egypt expelled a number of lepers and other "unclean" people who fled to Jerusalem and founded the Israelite kingdom.

It is quite obvious that Manetho's version of the Exodus story does not represent an independent Egyptian tradition, but is simply the Biblical story turned on its head. In the account contained in the Hebrew Bible, the Hebrews are the heroes and the Egyptians the villains; Manetho simply turned the Hebrews into leprous villains, and justified the actions of the Egyptian rulers.

No doubt Egyptians had become aware of the Exodus story from the Jews who had settled in Egypt after the babylonian destruction of the Judean kingdom in the 6th century BC, and were deeply offended by it, since it shows enormous contempt for the Egyptian people and their culture.

Manetho's judeophobia reflects the communal conflict that had arisen between native Egyptians and the Jews who had settled in their country. The cause of the conflict was Jewish ethnocentrism and religious intolerance, their lack of respect for the culture and religion of the people among whom they had settled.

A similar process occurred in the relationship of Jews with Greeks and Romans. When the Ancient Greeks first came in contact with Jews, they had a very favourable initial impression, regarding them as a "nation of philosophers". However, their attitude soon changed as they became aware of Jewish religious fanaticism and racial intolerance. The aim of the Greeks was to achieve a synthesis between their religion and culture and those of the peoples of the former Persian Empire, now under Greek rule, for the purpose of creating a universal hellenistic civilisation that would unite all those peoples. The Jews were the only people who rejected hellenism, because it was incompatible with their belief that they were the "Chosen People", superior to all others, and that their God, Yahveh, was the only god, incomparable with any others.

Eventually, relations between greeks and Jews became very bad, and Jews were seen as the complete antithesis of the greek culture and way of life. In that development, it is unquestionable that the greeks were the more tolerant people and the Jews the more intolerant.

The same thing happened with the Romans. Initially they tried to cultivate friendly relations with the Jews and entered into alliances with them, bending over backwards to accommodate the peculiar requirements of the Judaic Law. But eventually the Romans came up against jewish intolerance and religious fanaticism; the immediate cause of the Jewish uprising in Judea in 66 AD was the refusal of Jewish zealots to tolerate the presence in their country of a large gentile population, referred to as "Greeks" by Josephus.

Eventually, the Romans accused the Jews of "odio gentis humanae" = hatred of the human race.

The important historical fact is that the conflict between Jews and the Hellenistic WEorld of the Greeks and Romans had nothing whatever ot do with the teachings of Christianity, indeed it preceded the emergence of the Christian religion by several centuries. Thus judeophobia was not created by anything in Christianity. Given the essentially tolerant nature of Greek and Roman civilisation in regard to religious belief, the appearance of judeophobic attitudes among Ancient Greeks and Romans must have been a reaction on their part to the radical intolerance of the Judaic religion and culture.

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Re: When did antisemitism start?

Post by paolosilv » 13 Jul 2009 06:54

There are an abundance of anti Israel and anti Judaic quotes in the New Testament. The Jews were driven out by the Romans in 70 AD, and the temple destroyed. The hatred of the Jews towards their neighbors is easy to understand: they were grossly outnumbered by Empire-builders; and they were a priestly people with a Monotheistic religion surrounded by polytheistic neighbors, practicers of pagan sex rites. The odium they felt for others was a necessary psychological defense to protect their own culture and land in a time when horrible things happened on the same scale as the war in Europe sixty plus years ago. Seen from their own point of view, it is easier to understand what the cause of these conflicts with their neighbors was: a desire to protect themselves.

But I guess anything that displeases you is a rant, so I won't waste my time arguing with someone who is totally intolerant of anyone else's opinion, unless it conforms with his own. I must complain to the moderator about this endless abuse.
Last edited by paolosilv on 14 Jul 2009 00:06, edited 2 times in total.

Sid Guttridge
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Re: When did antisemitism start?

Post by Sid Guttridge » 13 Jul 2009 10:55

Hi Michael,

Your above posts are much stronger on assertion and opinion than on sources, and so have to be viewed with some scepticism.

However, your attempt to distinguish modern German political anti-Semitism from the longer term and more widespread anti-Semitism across Chistendom has some use here, as it allows us to focus where the original poster probably intended.

You wrote: "The German word "Antisemitismus", of which the English "anti-Semitism" is merely a translation, was coined for the purpose of defining a political movement, which had as its goal putting an end to the spread of Jewish influence ("Semitismus") in Germany, and its eradication from German political, economic and cultural life."

I would only add that "Semitismus" in this context is also of German coinage and represents a German perception of a Jewish threat, not necessarily a reality. German Jews weren't pursuing some political movement known as "Semitismus" that German political "Anti-Semitismus" was countering.

Cheers,

Sid.

garlock
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Re: When did antisemitism start?

Post by garlock » 13 Jul 2009 11:13

Hello folks,

I just picked up a good book at my favorite used book emporium: The Popes Against the Jews, David I. Kertzer, Vintage, 2001. Kertzer writes about just what we are talking about here. In fact, he hits on so many of the areas we have brought up that his introduction could be a response on this thread. The book is intended to be a response to the Catholic Church's We Remember, 1998, in which the church attempted to explain itself and exonerate itself in relation to antisemitism.

regards,

John

andrek
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Re: When did antisemitism start?

Post by andrek » 13 Jul 2009 13:05

The_Enigma wrote:Hi all,

As the bit of a lame title suggests, i am attempting to discover when antisemitism really got going in Germany.

My current understanding is that once Hitler rose to power in the 1930s it got in full swing. I also know that there was periods during the late 1800s were there was a rise in antisemitism but as far as i know was stompped on before it reached any sort of level on par with the 30s.

So during the Nazi parties early actions in the 1920s was the Jewish community targeted in the same sort of way as they were during the 1930s?
Where the Nazis the first to do so or had this same sort of behaviour carried on since the late 1800s?

On a slight side note, i have read that the same sort of attitute was seen in Poland during the 1930s is this correct? Was the same attitute seen in the same geographical area when "Poland" use to be part of Austria, Germany and Russia, during the 1800s until Poland was recreated?

Am sorry for all the questions but i cant currently find the answers for them. Any help would be greatly appreciated!


Sorry, but the roots of antisemitism in german has nothing to do with Hitler.

German historians have verified that Beethoven, Wagner, Hoelderlin, Friedrich der Grosse, Karl der Grosse and even Martin Luther are influenced by antisemitism or have been strong antisemites in their thinking like Hitler. Thus they are no longer model in germany anymore.

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Re: When did antisemitism start?

Post by phylo_roadking » 13 Jul 2009 13:56

judeophobia existed in Egypt from at least the 4th Century BC.


...but not necessarily because they were JEWS....but because they were a slave race to the Egyptians...? :wink: I'm not aware of any society that practiced slavery that ever regarded it's slaveworkers as superior to themselves! 8O

They felt such contempt for the Jews that after they destroyed the Temple in 70 AD


They destroyed the Temple not in 70AD but IIRC in 125 during the SECOND Revolt. It was only burned - and accidently, Vespasian specifically ordered titus to avoid a seige/destruction - during the 69-70AD Revolt. And it was destroyed for it's proven nationalist rallying abilities and fortified strength rather than its religious significance.

They also carted away Jews as slaves to build their pagan buildings, as demonstrated by the monument to the Roman Titus, which explicitly shows Jewish slaves being paraded through polytheistic Rome.


...AND the Dacians on Trjan's Column, etc. The last time I looked - the Romans did this to EVERY race they defeated and enslaved :lol: This is the Jews being treated as equals - the equals of every other race that Rome met and bested :wink:

The Christians also continued this tradition of official Judeophobia, or anti-Judaism, once that religion became the religion of the Empire. None of this can be explained by 'a natural reaction to Jews'" own hostility to others


Actually, in THIS case it CAN; take a look at the early history of the Christianity in Jerusalem and how Jewish Orthodoxy persecuted them...

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