The Jewish Question in German Literature, 1749-1939 is an erudite and searching literary study of the uneasy position of the Jews in Germany and Austria from the first pleas for Jewish emancipation during the Enlightenment to the eve of the Holocaust. Trying to avoid hindsight, and drawing on a wide range of literary texts, Ritchie Robertson offers a close examination of attempts to construct a Jewish identity suitable for an increasingly secular world. He examines both literary portrayals of Jews by Gentile writers - whether antisemitic, friendly, or ambivalent - and efforts to reinvent Jewish identities by the Jews themselves, in response to antisemitism culminating in Zionism. No other study by a single author deals with German-Jewish relations so comprehensively and over such a long period of literary history. Robertson's new work will prove stimulating for anyone interested in the modern Jewish experience, as well as for scholars and students of German fiction, prose, and political culture.
`Robertson aims to give a broad synthesis of nearly two centuries of literary history, and it is difficult to imagine a book that does it better' Modern Language Quarterly, Vol.62, No.1 `Well versed in contemporary research on the history of German Jewry, Robertson offers literary critics an easily digestible introduction to this field. His primary goal, and what he does best, is to place literary expressions of the Jewish question in historical context' Modern Language Quarterly, Vol.62, No.1 `Eminently readable and accessible, this study is destined to become the standard survey of the topic' Modern Language Quarterly, Vol.62, No.1 `Robertson's book presents a breathtaking synthesis of literary expressions of the "Jewish question" in the German-speaking world, neatly positioning them alongside political, theological, philosophical, racial, and medical discourses from the period. The book's great strength is that it avoids teleological views of German history as a prelude to the Holocaust' Modern Language Quarterly, Vol.62, No.1 This magisterial survey, ranging over almost two hundred years, should be read by all those interested in the Jewish question in German literature and indeed in the German-speaking territories themselves. ... he tackles such potentially painful topics as Jewish self-hatred; and he does so calmly, judiciously and with a wealth of evidence. `Robertson does an admirable job in identifying and analyzing the complex development of 'the Jewish Question.'' Mitchell B. Hart, Religious Studies Rev. Vol.26, No.4, Oct. 00. `This book will be valuable to beginning and advanced students and specialists of modern Jewish and modern German history and literature.' Mitchell B. Hart, Religious Studies Rev. Vol.26, No.4, Oct. 00. `It can be mined for its extensive translations and summaries and engaged with as a masterful synthesis and interpretation of the major themes and dilemmas of modern Jewish and European history.' Mitchell B. Hart, Religious Studies Rev. Vol.26, No.4, Oct. 00. `the reader will appreciate Robertson's fresh insights and his ability to synthesize and elucidate a vast body of primary and secondary sources.' I. Di Maio, Choice, June 2000. `a whole series of stories, richly heterogenous in nature ... his account of Mendelssohn's career, and of his family's history, is admirably fair and illuminating. Robertson's is a magisterial work. He has read everything, and summarises it well' Anthony Julius, The Times, 29/07/99 `Robertson's tireless labour ... Robertson's scholarly work deserves a place in every university library.' Edward Timms, THES
Number Of Pages: 544
Published: 1st August 1999
Country of Publication: GB
Dimensions (cm): 21.59 x 13.97 x 3.51
Weight (kg): 0.73