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Jewish EmancipationA History Across Five Centuries$
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David Sorkin

Print publication date: 2019

Print ISBN-13: 9780691164946

Published to Princeton Scholarship Online: May 2020

DOI: 10.23943/princeton/9780691164946.001.0001

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Mass Society, II

Mass Society, II

(p.250) Chapter Twenty Mass Society, II
Jewish Emancipation

David Sorkin

Princeton University Press

This chapter describes the new politics that emerged in fin-de-siècle Europe, which challenged liberal democracy and bourgeois society. Zionists and Autonomists espoused the idea that Jews were a nation entitled to its own national life either as a majority in Palestine or a national minority in Europe. Both developed the concept of “assimilation” to denigrate emancipation's pernicious effects. In eastern Europe, all the Jews' political parties—emancipationists, Zionists, Autonomists, Bundist Socialists—embraced a version of national minority rights. Meanwhile, the Bund represented a Jewish socialism that dreamed of a classless society to solve the Jewish Question. Orthodox Jews mobilized to press their own causes and to counter the multiple threats of the organized secular political parties. Ultimately, the developments of the fin de siècle were to shape Jewish life in the first four decades of the twentieth century.

Keywords:   Zionists, Autonomists, Jews, national minority, emancipation, emancipationists, Bundist Socialists, Jewish socialism, Jewish Question, Orthodox Jews

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