Catalogue


Medieval stereotypes and modern antisemitism [electronic resource] /
Robert Chazan.
imprint
Berkeley : University of California Press, c1997.
description
xiii, 189 p. ; 24 cm.
ISBN
0520203941 (cloth : alk. paper)
format(s)
Book
Holdings
More Details
imprint
Berkeley : University of California Press, c1997.
isbn
0520203941 (cloth : alk. paper)
restrictions
Licensed for access by U. of T. users.
catalogue key
8511575
 
Includes bibliographical references (p. 173-183) and index.
A Look Inside
Excerpts
Flap Copy
"Chazan's highly readable work raises large questions of great contemporary interest. . . . No one has made the argument, at least in so direct a way, that it was in the twelfth century for the first time that Christians began to think of contemporary Jews as a fundamentally malevolent force within Christian society."--Robert C. Stacey, author ofThe English Jews in the Middle Ages, 1066-1290
Flap Copy
"Chazan's highly readable work raises large questions of great contemporary interest. . . . No one has made the argument, at least in so direct a way, that it was in the twelfth century for the first time that Christians began to think of contemporary Jews as a fundamentally malevolent force within Christian society."--Robert C. Stacey, author of The English Jews in the Middle Ages, 1066-1290
Full Text Reviews
Appeared in Choice on 1998-01:
The Jewish communities of northern Europe seemed to develop in the late tenth century; grow and prosper; and expand during the 11th and 12th centuries into England, and through the German lands into Poland. For the most part these communities were tolerated by the Christian majority because of the necessary and valuable functions the Jews provided, mainly trading and moneylending. Yet these communities fell victim to rapid decline. Chazan surveys the shifts and changes affecting and afflicting Ashkenazic Jeweries, and argues that this precipitous decline can be traced to the creation of new and highly negative images and stereotypes of Jews. He asserts that these new images had roots in traditional anti-Jewish thinking, the changed behavior of the Jewish minority, and the ever increasing anxieties of the Christian majority. One new charge was that Jews inflicted harm on Christians because of animosity to Christians and their religion. Chazan seeks to tie these developments into the historical development of antisemitism. This study provides a sober account of the rise, decline, and history of the communities of Ashkenaz in a straightforward and accessible manner. All levels. S. D. Benin; University of Memphis
Reviews
This item was reviewed in:
Choice, January 1998
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Summaries
Long Description
The twelfth century in Europe, hailed by historians as a time of intellectual and spiritual vitality, had a dark side. As Robert Chazan points out, the marginalization of minorities emerged during the "twelfth-century renaissance" as part of a growing pattern of persecution, and among those stigmatized the Jews figured prominently. The migration of Jews to northern Europe in the late tenth century led to the development of a new set of Jewish communities. This northern Jewry prospered, only to decline sharply two centuries later. Chazan locates the cause of the decline primarily in the creation of new, negative images of Jews. He shows how these damaging twelfth-century stereotypes developed and goes on to chart the powerful, lasting role of the new anti-Jewish imagery in the historical development of antisemitism. This coupling of the twelfth century's notable intellectual bequests to the growth of Western civilization with its legacy of virulent anti-Jewish motifs offers an important new key to understanding modern antisemitism.

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