Skip to 0 minutes and 27 secondsWelcome to the third week of our course “Antisemitism: From Its Origins to the Present.” In the previous week, we learned how the dominant movements and ideologies of the Modern Era influenced attitudes towards Jews and Judaism, for better and for worse. This period, with its stress on reason, secularism, humanism and equality, was expected to eradicate all religious based anti-Jewish sentiments. However, last week’s lesson showed us how modernization and nationalism, which allowed for the integration of Jews into their respective European countries, also brought with them the rise of new and modern forms of antisemitism.

Skip to 1 minute and 3 secondsBased on racial perceptions that developed during this time and in relation to the extreme social upheavals of the 19th century, Jews began to be perceived as a threat to the very notion of progress, to the unity of the nation, and to the European race. In its extreme form, the antisemitism of the late modern period presented the Jews as members of a coordinated worldwide conspiracy aimed at destroying humanity. This week we will delve into the 20th century and see how these modern antisemitic notions and perceptions continued to develop and to be expressed.

Skip to 1 minute and 39 secondsAs we will see, the attitudes towards the Jews were greatly affected by the First World War, the Russian Revolution, and the volatile interwar years, reaching a murderous peak with the catastrophic event of the Holocaust.

From World War I to the Holocaust

How did the modern antisemitic notions and perceptions continue to develop and to be expressed during the first half of the 20th century? As we will see, the attitudes towards the Jews were greatly affected by the First World War, the Russian Revolution, and the volatile interwar years, reaching a murderous peak with the catastrophic event of the Holocaust.

For a full list of the scholars participating in this week please see “downloads” below.

Disclaimer: As this week deals with some of the horrific events of the 20th century, some learners may find part of the visuals in this week disturbing. Viewer discretion is advised.

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Antisemitism: From Its Origins to the Present

Yad Vashem

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