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The Anti-Semitic Moment: A Tour of France in 1898
by Pierre Birnbaum
translated by Jane Marie Todd
University of Chicago Press, 2011
Paper: 978-0-226-05206-9
Library of Congress Classification DS146.F8B5613 2011
Dewey Decimal Classification 305.892404409034

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ABOUT THIS BOOK

In 1898, the Dreyfus Affair plunged French society into a yearlong frenzy. In Paris and provincial villages throughout the country, angry crowds paraded through the streets, threatening to attack Jews and destroy Jewish-owned businesses. Anger about the imagined power of Jewish capital, as well as fears of treason and racial degeneration, made anti-Semitism a convenient banner behind which social and political factions could fall in line. Anti-Semitic feelings that had been simmering in France for decades came boiling to the surface.


Here Pierre Birnbaum guides readers on a tour of France during this crisis. He shows that in the midst of violence, Jewish citizens bravely and effectively defended themselves and were aided by a police force determined to maintain order. Birnbaum paints a vivid portrait of French Jewish culture at the time and explains why the French state remained strong in this time of widespread unrest.


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