Anti-Semitic Attacks in France


After a wave of anti-Semitic harassment in France, I’m wondering if anyone can tell me why this kind of stuff seems to happen mostly in France, and not in Great Britain? It can’t be because of “Islam,” because there’s a huge Muslim community in both countries. Does it have to do with the ethno-national background of North African Jewish-Muslim immigrant communities in relation to the Israel/Palestine conflict…or does it have as much or more to do with France and the French, the inability or unwillingness to assimilate an immigrant community, a failure to come to terms with religion or its own indigenous anti-Semitism?

About zjb

Zachary Braiterman is Professor of Religion in the Department of Religion at Syracuse University. His specialization is modern Jewish thought and philosophical aesthetics.
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2 Responses to Anti-Semitic Attacks in France

  1. efmooney says:

    Random thoughts on a very important question. The French are moving to Israel in droves, so things ARE very ugly there. I’d go back to the Dreyfus Affair (without which there might not have been Israel), and then to the loss of the Algerian War (Muslims who brought humiliation and terrorism to Paris). It always irked me that the French welcomed Heidegger immediately after WWII and neglected their own Bergson, who resisted the Nazi heroically (in his quiet way) in the last days of his life. And swiftly losing WWII (a war the Brits won) must play in somehow. Anyway there’s a century-plus ‘tradition’ of Jew-hatred in France (think of Sartre’s essay on the topic) that has no parallel in Britain (I think).

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