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    Antisemitism and Islamophobia

    Feldman, David (2020) Antisemitism and Islamophobia. Zion , ISSN 0044-4758.

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    In his groundbreaking essay, ‘Away from a definition of antisemitism’, the historian David Engel points out that the term anti-Semitism was first coined in the late nineteenth century. This observation is not novel but, importantly, Engel encourages his readers to take some new steps. He suggests we acknowledge the contingent character of a concept - antisemitism - that is generally assumed to provide a mirror on the world rather than, as he argues, a construction and representation of it. The present essay takes Engel’s insight in a different direction. For Engel’s emphasis on the contingent origins and meanings of the concept of anti-Semitism suggests we stand in need of a history of the term. Put another way, we can ask whether it is really the case, as Engel seems to suggest, that the meanings of antisemitism were fixed in the 1890s and have not changed since. Focusing largely on the history of Great Britain, this essay explores this question by examining successive iterations of the concept of antisemitism alongside the history of the more recent concept of Islamophobia.


    Item Type: Article
    School: Birkbeck Faculties and Schools > Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences > School of Historical Studies
    Research Centres and Institutes: The Birkbeck Institute for the Study of Antisemitism
    Depositing User: David Feldman
    Date Deposited: 24 Jun 2019 12:54
    Last Modified: 02 Aug 2023 17:52


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