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p. 233. The Chosen Peoplelocked

  • Steven Beller


In the century before antisemitism emerged as a powerful political movement in the early 1880s, European Jewry had been through a radical transformation. ‘The Chosen People’ looks at developments around that time to help explain the path antisemitism took. Modernization of the European economy, society, and political systems from the mid-17th century onwards added to radical changes in thought and attitudes towards Jews. They needed to be integrated into society, and how to do this became known as the ‘Jewish Question’. Attempts to solve the ‘Jewish Question’ were more successful in Western Europe than in Russia and Central Europe. But Jewish difference persisted, partially explaining the political force of antisemitism.

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