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Antisemitism Its History And Causes by Bernard Lazare

By Bernard Lazare

Bernard Lazare's debatable magnum opus, initially released in France in 1894, asks why the Jews have aroused such hatred for 3 thousand years. The journalist, although severed from his Jewish upbringing, was once fiercely dedicated to social justice and will now not forget about a surprising antisemitism within the fin-de-siècle circles he knew. In seek mg for its historical motives, he was once additionally looking for his personal roots and position on this planet. As biographer Nelly Wilsonhas famous, younger Lazare used to be "constantly engaged in a discussion with himself" while he wrote Antisemitism, Its background and Causes.
Lazare starts off his "impartial research" via contemplating no matter what within the Jewish personality will be accountable for antisemitism. Then he seems outward to these countries between which the Israelites dispersed, studying the various faces of antisemitism from Greco-Roman antiquity to the tip of the 19th century. Lazare brings his study and examine to undergo on no matter what shape antisemitism has taken: ethnic, nationalist, monetary, social, literary, philosophical. spotting that antisemitism is essentially in line with worry of the stranger and the necessity for a scapegoat, Lazare concludes with a shocking state of affairs for the long run. This impressive booklet conveys Lazare's personal religious progress. France's Dreyfus Affair within the Eighteen Nineties might provoke him to a passionate conflict opposed to antisemitism.

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Extra resources for Antisemitism Its History And Causes

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The Jews, however, had not given up; they deemed themselves in possession of the true religion, upon as good a title as the Christians, and in the eyes of the people their assertion had the attraction flowing from unflinching convictions. In the morning of its triumph the Church as yet did not hold that universal ascendancy which it gained later; it was still weak, though powerful; but those who directed it aspired to universality, and they could not help considering the Jews as their worst adversaries; they had to strain themselves to the utmost to weaken Jewish propaganda and proselytism.

The Roman laws did not reach them there and the ecclesiastical ordinances of the Council of Elvira, in the fourth century which enjoined Christians from intercourse with them, remained a dead letter. The Visigothic conquest did not change their condition and the Arian Visigoths confined themselves to persecuting the Catholics. The Jews enjoyed the same civil and political rights as the conquerors; moreover, the Jews joined their armies and the Pyrenean frontier was guarded by Jewish troops. ) their existence became precarious.

The original nucleus was swelled by fugitives from Judea, who reached Arabia at the time Palestine was conquered by the Romans. In [50] the beginning of the Christian era there were in Arabia four Jewish tribes, whose centre was Medina. The Jews accomplished a moral and intellectual conquest of the Arabs, whom they converted to Judaism; at least they made them adopt its rites. The kinship between the two peoples made it easy, the more so that, in Yemen, the Jews had in their turn adopted Arabian customs, which differed but little from the early Jewish customs.

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