Studies the negative representations of Judaism and Jews from antiquity to the modern world. Topics include: Greco-Roman concepts of the Jewish religion; medieval Christian symbolization of the demonic Jew; Jews and negative attitudes to capitalism; blood purity and blood libel; the rise of racial prejudice in the modern nation state; totalitarianism and genocide; antisemitism and anti-Zionism.
The "History of Antisemitism" examines the negative representations of Judaism and the Jewish people within the larger context of the major historical changes taking place in the ancient Mediterranean worls, medieval European civilization, and the rise of the modern nation state. We will study a wide variety of texts, from Greek and Latin historical writing to Gospel narratives, theological treatises of the Church Fathers, medieval passion plays, saint's legends, Enlightenment philosophy, nineteenth-century racist pamphlets, and Nazi propaganda. We will also study antisemitic themes in film and contemporary social media.
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