The And Enlightenment Ideals During The 18th And 19th Centuries

998 WordsApr 18, 20164 Pages
Antisemitism and Enlightenment Ideals During the 18th and 19th centuries, antisemitism made its mark on Europe. Many people had prejudices against Jews and Judaism. However, there were also people striving for an Enlightened environment. A lot of ideas were generated on this topic and several viewpoints emerged. Papers and and books were written laying out these viewpoints, including the texts of Richard Wagner and Christian Wilhelm von Dohm. Wagner’s work, Judaism in Music, shows his strong opinions on the Enlightenment process and what he thinks should occur. Dohm’s paper, On the Civic Improvement of the Jews, illustrates the ideas that he believes will be most beneficial. These two authors, Wagner and Dohm, both had specific thoughts on how and if the ideas of this Enlightenment process should be carried out. The Jews in Europe had been experiencing the majority of the blame for the poor economic status, especially in Germany. This was derived from the fact that a hefty percent of Jews worked in commerce. A great deal of antisemites, including Wagner, believe that the Jews are making culture a commodity since they have all of the power over the money (80-81). He said that they swindled others into giving them their money so they made money “without actual labour” (Wagner 87). Wagner’s solution to this problem to be to take the Jews out of commerce. This was consistent with some of the Enlightened thinkers, including Dohm. By taking Jews out of commerce, and moving
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