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Reading Between The Lines. Assertion And Reassertion In European Jewish Life

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Chapter Summary

Anti-Semitism—might it be religious, political, or racial—seems upon analysis to be part of a wider phenomenon that could touch at any time any other groups of people; an attitude growing from incidental cases of aggression into a towering rage. The problem starts with what we could call the hatred of what is different. When we now look at a group of different individuals amidst a majority group, frustrated by for instance feelings of economical or military inferiority, the majority group will often try to balance out its situation by claiming the inferiority of the minority group—especially when different. The Germans during the period between the two World Wars suffered from being defeated after the war of 1914–1918, and trying to recover their supposedly lost dignity, proclaimed the Slavs to be inferior, the Gypsies even more so and the Jews just good enough to be gassed, like rats.

Keywords:Anti-semitism; Xenophobia



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