Inside the Anti­se­mit­ic Mind

Moni­ka Schwartz-Friesel and Jehu­da Reinharz
  • From the Publisher
December 12, 2016

Anti­semitism nev­er dis­ap­peared in Europe. In fact, there is sub­stan­tial evi­dence that it is again on the rise, man­i­fest in vio­lent acts against Jews in some quar­ters, but more com­mon­ly notice­able in every­day dis­course in main­stream Euro­pean soci­ety.

This inno­v­a­tive empir­i­cal study exam­ines writ­ten exam­ples of anti­semitism in con­tem­po­rary Ger­many. It demon­strates that hos­til­i­ty against Jews is not just a right-wing phe­nom­e­non or a phe­nom­e­non among the une­d­u­cat­ed, but is man­i­fest among all social class­es, includ­ing intellectuals.

Draw­ing on 14,000 let­ters and e‑mails sent between 2002 and 2012 to the Cen­tral Coun­cil of Jews in Ger­many and to the Israeli embassy in Berlin, as well as com­mu­ni­ca­tions sent between 2010 and 2011 to Israeli embassies in Aus­tria, Switzer­land, Bel­gium, Eng­land, Ire­land, the Nether­lands, Swe­den, and Spain, this vol­ume shows how lan­guage plays a cru­cial role in acti­vat­ing and re-acti­vat­ing anti­semitism. In addi­tion, the authors inves­ti­gate the role of emo­tions in anti­se­mit­ic argu­men­ta­tion pat­terns and ana­lyze anti-Israelism” as the dom­i­nant form of con­tem­po­rary hatred of Jews.

Discussion Questions