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2 Marx's defence of Jewish emancipation and critique of the Jewish question The Jew … must cease to be a Jew if he will not allow himself to be hindered by his law from fulfilling his duties to the State and his fellow-citizens. (Bruno Bauer, Die Judenfrage ) 1 The Jews (like the Christians) are fully politically emancipated in various states. Both Jews and Christians are far from being

in Antisemitism and the left
On the return of the Jewish question

Universalism has acted as a stimulus for Jewish emancipation, that is, for civil, political and social inclusion. It has also been a source of anti-Jewish prejudice up to and beyond the classic antisemitism of the modern period. While the experience of Jews is by no means unique in this respect, one of the peculiarities of the 'anti-Judaic' tradition has been to represent Jews in some important regard as the 'other' of the universal: as the personification either of a particularism opposed to the universal, or of a false universalism concealing Jewish self-interest. The former contrasts the particularism of the Jews to the universality of bourgeois civil society. The latter contrasts the bad universalism of the 'rootless cosmopolitan Jew' to the good universalism of whatever universal is advanced: nation, race or class. This book explores debates over Jewish emancipation within the eighteenth-century Enlightenment, contrasting the work of two leading protagonists of Jewish emancipation: Christian von Dohm and Moses Mendelssohn. It discusses the emancipatory power of Karl Marx's critique of Bruno Bauer's opposition to Jewish emancipation and endorsement of The Jewish Question. Marxist debates over the growth of anti-Semitism; Hannah Arendt's critique of three types of Jewish responsiveness--assimilationism, Zionism and cosmopolitanism-- to anti-Semitism; and the endeavours of a leading postwar critical theorist, Jurgen Habermas are also discussed. Finally, the book focuses its critique on left antizionists who threaten to reinstate the Jewish question when they identify Israel and Zionism as the enemies of universalism.

Jewish emancipation and the Jewish question

1 Struggles within Enlightenment: Jewish emancipation and the Jewish question The principle of modern states has enormous strength and depth because it allows the principle of subjectivity to attain fulfilment in the self-sufficient extreme of personal particularity while at the same time bringing it back to substantial unity and so preserving this unity in the principle of subjectivity itself

in Antisemitism and the left
Open Access (free)
Universalism and the Jewish question

, in this sense, deeply and mutually imbricated. Jewish experiences of universalism have been correspondingly equivocal. Universalism has acted as a stimulus for Jewish emancipation, that is, for civil, political and social inclusion; it has also been a source (though by no means the only source) of anti-Jewish prejudice up to and beyond the classic antisemitism of the modern period. While the experience of Jews is by no means unique in this respect, one of the

in Antisemitism and the left
Hannah Arendt’s Jewish writings

in the Enlightenment in quite different ways and for quite different ends than it was by antisemites, in support of Jewish emancipation rather than against it, the Enlightenment provided ‘classic antisemitism its theoretical basis’. 9 She argued that what distinguished modern secular antisemitism from medieval religious hatred of Jews, was a legacy of Enlightenment: it was the abstraction of ‘the Jew’ as a principle of evil

in Antisemitism and the left

as a self-identity and signifier of pride, and in the Europe-wide growth of antisemitic movements and parties. ‘Antisemitism’ was more than a new name for an old phenomenon; it was also the banner under which diverse hostilities toward Jewish emancipation could be mobilised; a reactive response to the equal treatment of a people not accepted as social equals. It gave a name to the belief that the harmfulness of Jews was made worse by their newfound

in Antisemitism and the left
Jürgen Habermas and the European left

the fate of postnationalism itself. Like other forms of universalism, postnationalism can be abused to label others ‘nationalist’ or stigmatise others as its enemies. While postnationalism, as Habermas conceived it, had as its aim the supersession of the Jewish question and its replacement by a vista of Jewish emancipation appropriate to its time, the cracks in the postnational edifice allowed a different agenda to enter. It was to turn the Jewish nation into

in Antisemitism and the left