Social Policy

Antisemitism and Anti-Zionism: Representation, Cognition and by Rusi Jaspal

By Rusi Jaspal

Antisemitism and anti-Zionism are advanced, delineable, but inter-related social-psychological phenomena. whereas antisemitism has been defined as an irrational, age-old prejudice, anti-Zionism is frequently represented as a sound reaction to a 'rogue state'. Drawing upon media and visible resources and wealthy interview information from Iran, Britain and Israel, Antisemitism and Anti-Zionism: illustration, Cognition and daily speak examines the ideas of antisemitism and anti-Zionism, tracing their evolution and inter-relations, and contemplating the designated ways that they're manifested, and answered to, through Muslim and Jewish groups in Iran, Britain and Israel.Providing insights from social psychology, sociology and background, this interdisciplinary research sheds gentle at the pivotal function of the media, social representations and id strategies in shaping antisemitism and anti-Zionism. As such, this provocative booklet can be of curiosity to social scientists engaged on antisemitism, race and ethnicity, political sociology and political technological know-how, media stories and center japanese politics.

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Additional info for Antisemitism and Anti-Zionism: Representation, Cognition and Everyday Talk

Sample text

According to Lewis’s conceptualisation of antisemitism, Hitler would, conversely, qualify as an antisemite because, as leader of the Nazi party, he disseminated demonising and dehumanising representations of Jews, whose “reform” was not deemed to be possible due to “racial inferiority” (Gilbert, 1985; Hilberg, 1985). Many scholars converge in their conceptualisation of antisemitism as a form of racism. Isaac (2010, p. 34) regards it as “a proto-racist set of ideas” and “a collective prejudice with delusional aspects” which “attributes to the Jews, as a collective group, negative traits that are unalterable, the result of hereditary factors”.

There are likely to be distinct social and psychological “routes” to the goals of distancing, displacement and/or destruction. The most obvious routes include inter alia the reconceptualisation of Jews as animalistic rather than human; Holocaust denial; the isolation of Jews; violence against Jews; and, as outlined by Fein in her definition above, group mobilisation against Jews. Thus, this conceptualisation invites us to consider what antisemites intend to achieve by disseminating particular representations of Jews.

Prominent figures in the Enlightenment movement were overtly antisemitic in their writings, which decisively contributed to antisemitism during this era – French Enlightenment literary figure, historian and philosopher Voltaire, for instance, was said to nurse a “violent hatred of Jews” which to a large degree shaped French public opinion (Meyer, 1963, p. 1177; see also Arnold, 1994). While the focus of medieval antisemitism had been largely upon charges of deicide, ritual murder, the practice of witchcraft and sorcery and the Jewish threat to Christianity, antisemitism during the Enlightment period, though ambivalent and fluctuant, introduced representations of Jewish world domination – more specifically, through control of the international financial system and the media and through the development of revolutionary ideologies (Yadlin, 1999).

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