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The "Jew" in Cinema

From the Golem to Don't Touch My Holocaust

Paperback Published: 7th January 2005
ISBN: 9780253217455
Number Of Pages: 374

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From cinema's beginnings, the film image of the "Jew" has closely followed the fortunes and misfortunes of Jews. Analyzing more than 70 films made in the Soviet Union, Poland, Hungary, Czechoslovakia and the Czech Republic, East and West Germany, France, Italy, the United States, and Israel from 1920 to the 1990s, noted historian Omer Bartov argues that depictions of the "Jew" in film have been fed by, or have reacted to, certain stereotypical depictions of Jews arising from age-old prejudices. These images, in turn, both reflected public attitudes and helped to shape them. He points to Mel Gibson's film The Passion of the Christ as one of the most recent examples of the phenomenon. In trenchant discussions of individual films, Bartov develops four basic cinematic representations of the "Jew": as perpetrator (especially in antisemitic films), as victim (especially in films about the Holocaust), as hero (especially in films about the state of Israel), and as anti-hero (especially in films about the Arab-Israeli conflict).

This absorbing book reveals the ways in which powerful images remained deeply embedded in the creative imagination, even as the circumstances that originally engendered them underwent profound changes. Bartov concludes that some of the fundamental prejudices about Jews, which predate cinema, persisted in cinematic depictions throughout the 20th century, although they have been reinterpreted according to changing political regimes, ideologies, and tastes. Covering a range of traditions and periods, The "Jew" in Cinema provides original and provocative interpretations that often contradict conventional views. Placing cinematic representations of the "Jew" within their historical context, Bartov demonstrates the powerful political, social, and cultural impact of these images on popular attitudes.

The Helen and Martin Schwartz Lectures in Jewish Studies

In this important work, Omer Bartov examines how the cinematic representations of the 'Jew' as 'perpetrator', 'victim', 'hero' and 'anti-hero' emerge not only throughout the course of film history, but also within a larger cultural practice of stereotyping Jewish identity. His central concern is 'the manner in which the cinematic ''Jew'' reflects the popularization, transformation, resistance to, and reintroduction of anti-Semitic imagery'.Vol. 43, no. 2, 2009--Noah Shenker "Ph.D. candidate in Critical Studies at the School of Cinematic Arts, USCLA "

The "Jew" as Perpetrator
The "Jew" as Victim
The "Jew" as Hero
The "Jew" as Anti-Hero
Table of Contents provided by Publisher. All Rights Reserved.

ISBN: 9780253217455
ISBN-10: 0253217458
Series: Helen and Martin Schwartz Lectures in Jewish Studies
Audience: General
Format: Paperback
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 374
Published: 7th January 2005
Publisher: Indiana University Press
Country of Publication: US
Dimensions (cm): 23.27 x 15.75  x 2.41
Weight (kg): 0.66