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Secondary antisemitism

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Title: Secondary antisemitism  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
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Subject: Antisemitism, Religious antisemitism, Racial antisemitism, Persecution of Jews, Aftermath of the Holocaust
Collection: Aftermath of the Holocaust, Antisemitism, Critical Theory
Publisher: World Heritage Encyclopedia

Secondary antisemitism

Secondary antisemitism is a distinct kind of [3][4] The term itself was coined by Peter Schönbach, a Frankfurt School co-worker of Theodor W. Adorno and Max Horkheimer, based on their Critical Theory.[5]

Adorno, in a 1959 lecture titled "Was bedeutet: Aufarbeitung der Vergangenheit" (published in his 1963 book Eingriffe. Neun kritische Modelle.[6]) addressed the fallacy of the broad German post-war tendency to associate and simultaneously causally link Jews with the Holocaust. According to Adorno's critique, an opinion had been readily accepted in Germany according to which the Jewish people were culpable in the crimes against them. Jewish guilt was assumed to varying extents, depending on the varying incarnations of that antisemitic notion, one of which is the idea that Jews were (and are) exploiting German guilt over the Holocaust.

Sometimes the victors are declared to be the cause of what the defeated have done when they were still in charge, and for the crimes of Hitler those are declared guilty who acquiesced his rise to power, and not those who hailed him. The idiocy in all this is in fact an indication of something mentally uncoped-with, of a wound, although the thought of wounds should be dedicated to the victims.[6]

Initially, members of the Frankfurt School spoke of "guilt-defensiveness anti-Semitism", an antisemitism motivated by a deflection of guilt.[7]

The rehabilitation of many lower and even several higher-ranking Third Reich officials and officers appears to have contributed to the development of secondary antisemitism. These officials were rehabilitated in spite of their considerable individual contributions to Nazi Germany's crimes. Several controversies ensued early in post-World War II Germany, e.g., when Konrad Adenauer appointed Hans Globke as Chief of the Chancellery although the latter had formulated the emergency legislation that gave Hitler unlimited dictatorial powers and had been one of the leading legal commentators on the Nuremberg race laws of 1935.[8][9] However, according to Adorno, parts of the German public never acknowledged these events and instead formed the notion of Jewish guilt in the Holocaust.

See also


  1. ^  
  2. ^ (1909 Gunnar Heinsohn mentions Zvi Rix in his books Was ist Antisemitismus (1988) and Söhne und Weltmacht (2003).
  3. ^  
  4. ^ Weinthal, Ben (2007-06-06). "The Raging Bronx Bull of German Journalism". Forward. The Jewish Daily. Retrieved 2012-01-13. 
  5. ^ Schönbach, Peter (1961). Reaktionen auf die antisemitische Welle im Winter 1959/60 (in German).  
  6. ^ a b  
  7. ^ Andrei S. Markovits (Spring 2006). "A New (or Perhaps Revived) "Uninhibitedness" toward Jews in Germany". Jewish Political Studies Review 18:1-2. Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs. Retrieved 2007-06-24. 
  8. ^  
  9. ^ Pendas, Devin Owen (2005). The Frankfurt Auschwitz Trial, 1963-1965: Genocide, History and the Limits of the Law.  

External links

  • Böhmer, Jochen. "Sekundärer Antisemitismus" (in Deutsch). Retrieved 2012-04-11. 
  • Introductory statement for panel on Holocaust education PDF (24.4 KB) from the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe Conference on Anti-Semitism and on Other Forms of Intolerance, Cordoba, 8 and 9 June 2005.
  • Best Practices on Combating Antisemitism - Conference Documentation PDF (1.15 MB) from an Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe meeting, Berlin, 20 to 21 November 2006.
  • The anti-Semitism of the 68ers. An interview with Tilman Fichter.
  • The Years of Extermination. Dan Diner reviews Saul Friedländer's three-part history of the Holocaust.
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