Jews in business and their representation in German literature, 1827-1934 / John Ward.

Ward, John, 1962- [Browse]
New York : Peter Lang, ©2010.
viii, 250 pages ; 23 cm.


  • Britische und Irische Studien zur deutschen Sprache und Literatur ; no. 53. [More in this series]
  • Britische und Irische Studien zur deutschen Sprache und Literature = British and Irish studies in German language and literature ; Bd. 53 [More in this series]
Summary note
The emancipation of Jews that commenced in Germany in the early 19th century pushed many Jews into urban commerce, industries, and intellectual professions. The ongoing modernization and the Jewish prominence in business brought about an anti-Jewish reaction. Jews were seen as the incarnation of the new materialistic "Zeitgeist", dishonest merchants pursuing non-German business practices, and usurpers of economic power. The Jews represented an alien, unwanted economic system. The backlash against the Jewish businessman was reflected in contemporary literature, from Wilhelm Hauff's "Jud Süß" (1827) to the Nazi novel "Shylock unter Bauern" by Felix Nabor (1934). Examines the representation of the Jewish businessman in German literature, in both antisemitic works and apologetic ones. Two "schools of thought" can be discerned in these writings: that the Jews, including the businessmen, can be corrected and assimilated into the German nation (e.g. in Freytag's "Soll und Haben", 1855); and the racist and eliminationist conception of the Jews as unassimilable and inherently detrimental aliens who have to be removed from the body of the nation (as in Wilhelm von Polenz's "Der Büttnerbauer", 1895), with Heinrich Mann's anti-Jewish writings somewhere in between. Discusses also the ambivalent stance of Theodor Fontane. Dwells on two "cautionary tales" written by Jewish authors and addressed to the Jews: the novel "Jud Süß" by Feuchtwanger (1925) and the play "Jud Süß" by Paul Kornfeld (1929), as well as responses to antisemitism addressed to a general audience: "Der neue Ahasver" by Fritz Mauthner (1881), "René Richter" by Lothar Brieger-Wasservogel (1906), and Hermann Bahr's "Die Rotte Korahs" (1919), a philosemitic non-Jewish response. (From the Bibliography of the Vidal Sassoon International Center for the Study of Antisemitism - The Hebrew University of Jerusalem).
Bibliographic references
Includes bibliographical references (p. [237]-244) and index.
  • Introduction
  • The Hoffaktor : a necessary evil?
  • Citizens and conmen
  • Heimatkunst and Hauptstadt : the portrayal of urban and rural Jewish business people in the literature of the late nineteenth century
  • The challenge of the Jewish commercial spirit in the early writing of Heinrich Mann
  • Responses to anti-Semitism by Jewish and non-Jewish authors
  • Conclusion.
  • 9783034301268 ((pbk. ; : alk. paper))
  • 303430126X ((pbk. ; : alk. paper))
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