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English and German Nationalist and Anti-Semitic Discourse, 1871-1945


Edited By Geraldine Horan, Felicity Rash and Daniel Wildman

This volume contains selected papers from an international conference of the same name held at Queen Mary, University of London, on 10-11 November 2010. The contributions from scholars working in the fields of modern political and cultural history, political science, modern European literature and linguistics provide interdisciplinary perspectives on nationalism and anti-Semitism in English- and German- language contexts from the beginning of the German Second Reich (1871) to the end of World War II (1945). Some articles examine critically theoretical constructs used to justify and defend anti-Semitism in Germany, focusing on the realms of science, music, the press and film. Others discuss the role of anti-Semitism in constructing völkisch-nationalist notions of ‘German’ identity, as well as discourses of German colonialism. As a counterpart to German perspectives, several articles chart contemporary British reactions to German anti-Semitism and radical nationalism.


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Felicity Rash Contextualizing Nationalism and Anti-Semitism 1871-1945


Felicity Rash Contextualizing Nationalism and Anti-Semitism 1871–1945 The articles in this volume share a concern with the use of discourse to disseminate nationalist and anti-Semitic ideologies. The period 1871–1945 has been chosen because it encompasses the Second and Third German Reichs in the years leading up to and including the two world wars. This era saw Germany step onto the world stage as a newly born political unit with national and colonialist ambitions that appeared to threaten British imperial might. The conf lict between German and British nationalisms was a major causal factor of both world wars. The age was also one of more or less ‘scientific’ exploration of the nature and origins of the human race, in particular the divergences and similarities between human beings of dif ferent ethnic origins. Such research was used to confirm and support anti- Semitic prejudices, although it did not provide an excuse for the conf lict between two major branches of the Germanic ‘race’: the Anglo-Saxon and the ‘pure’ German. For the purposes of this collection, the term ‘discourse’ has been interpreted in its broadest, Foucauldian sense of a social practice, both constituting and constituted by societies, their systems, and the attitudes and behaviour of their members. Discourse production is seen as more than the creation of individual linguistic utterances or texts; it includes all constructs pertaining to social relationships and structures. Discourse analysts are interested in relationships between texts and developments over time within textual genres, as well as in...

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