Cover

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Title Page, Copyright, Dedication

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pp. i-vi

Contents

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pp. vii-viii

List of Illustrations

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pp. ix-x

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Acknowledgments

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pp. xi-xiv

I am delighted to acknowledge the many forms of support I received for this book.
I am very grateful for the financial support, including a book subvention, that the University of Iowa provided for my project. I am also thankful that the Jean and Samuel Frankel Center for Judaic Studies funded a six-month...

List of Abbreviations

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pp. xv-xviii

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Introduction

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pp. 1-27

Upon leaving his home to dine with gentiles, Shylock gives his daughter instructions that reveal much about this notorious literary Jew.1 With his perception of music as a hateful cry emanating from a deformed (“wry-necked”) object or person, Shylock aggressively—and tragically—denigrates...

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1. Sepulchral Jews and Stony Christians: Supersession in Bede and Cynewulf

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pp. 28-63

Arguably, the primary form of religious difference that occupied the minds of Anglo-Saxon Christians was paganism. One of the two writers on which this chapter focuses, Bede, was born in 672/73, less than a hundred years after the Gregorian mission to convert the Anglo-Saxons and only decades after...

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2. Medieval Urban Noir: The Jewish House, the Christian Mob, and the City in Postconquest England

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pp. 64-99

If Bede and Cynewulf’s sepulchral imagery signals a disturbing English refusal to give contemporary Jews a space in which to live, the reality of Jews’ ongoing presence in Christian lands became evident to the English as never before after 1066, when William the Conqueror brought Ashkenazic...

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3. The Minster and the Privy: Jews, Lending, and the Making of Christian Space in Chaucer’s England

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pp. 100-134

When Jews migrated to England, they inhabited a society whose commercial aspects, while at times hard to pin down, were nevertheless significant and even on the rise.1 Georges Duby describes how, by the late 1100s, England and Europe witnessed the “take-off” of a profit economy that slowly but...

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4. In the Shadow of Moyse’s Hall: Jews, the City, and Commerce in the Croxton Play of the Sacrament

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pp. 135-171

Scholars have often understood the fifteenth century as a time of commercial decline in England.1 The truly decisive developments in trade and exchange, so the received historical account goes, occurred centuries earlier, in the 1200s.2 Then, in the wake of famine, plague, and other fourteenth-century...

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5. Failures of Fortification and the Counting Houses of The Jew of Malta

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pp. 172-210

If, as Emily Bartels points out, the title of The Jew of Malta (1592) “demands that we consider what it means to be ‘of Malta’ while deciding what it means to be ‘the Jew,’” the drama soon provides an answer.1 Just one hundred lines into the play, Barabas soliloquizes about Jewish wealth, highlighting the singularly...

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6. Readmission and Displacement: Menasseh ben Israel, William Prynne, John Milton

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pp. 211-247

An Amsterdam rabbi raised by Sephardic émigrés from Portugal, Menasseh ben Israel (1604–57) was a renowned and well-connected scholar, teacher, orator, and publisher. His passions encompassed messianism, the cabal, and, in a more political vein, the problem of Jewish oppression.1 Famously...

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Coda

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pp. 248-258

A central aim of this book has been demonstrating how antisemitic texts merit our critical attention for what they tell us about the utility of the imagined Jew in producing English capitalist space. By taking seriously their geographic dimensions, I have shown how such texts respond to historical...

Notes

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pp. 259-324

Bibliography

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pp. 325-360

Index

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pp. 361-374