May 27, “Social Justice, Human Rights, Cosmopolitanism and their Enemies – Jewishness and the Jewish State”
Dr. Eli Vinokur, Gordon College of Education and the School of Tourism at the University of Haifa
Dr. Charles Asher Small, Executive Director, ISGAP; Research Scholar, St. Antony’s College, Oxford
Date: Wednesday, May 27, 2020
Time: 8:00 AM Los Angeles Time, 11:00 AM New York Time, 4:00 PM London Time, 6:00 PM Israel Time
Antisemitism, to use the words of Robert Wistrich, is probably the longest hatred in human history. But it is also one of the hardest to frame and explain. For millennia, Jews were blamed for almost everything and its opposite – socialism and capitalism, elitism and being the drags of society, unwillingness to assimilate and contamination of local cultures through assimilation, pioneering liberalism and leading a global anti-liberalism plot, and the list goes on and on. But albeit the irrationality of this historical phenomenon, one common thread runs through the genealogy of Jew hatred – their “otherness.”
In my short talk, building upon the writings of Ilan Gur-Ze’ev and David Patterson, among others, I will propose that in recent decades a new form of Jew hatred has manifested, mainly among new progressives. In addition to traditional forms of hatred, which are still vivid, Jewishness and the Jewish state are blamed for being the innate source of all evil from within Western civilization. This new form of anti-Semitism suggests that Western civilization’s redemption from its primordial sins could be attained by eliminating Jewishness, the Jewish state and what they represent.
After presenting the aforementioned intellectual shift in the perception of anti-Semitism within Western civilization, I will discuss its educational and social implications to world Jewry and to the Israeli state.