Cover

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Half Title, Title Page, Copyright

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Contents

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pp. v-vi

List of Abbreviations

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pp. vii-x

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Introduction. A Field Guide to the Bestiarium Judaicum

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pp. 1-28

In 1920, well-known writer and publicist Franz Blei, under the nom de plume Peregrin Steinhövel,2 privately issued Bestiarium Literaricum, a collection of vignettes in which literary figures, mostly contemporary, were transformed into all manner of beast and the occasional animated object. ...

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1. “O beastly Jews”: A Brief History of an (Un)Natural History

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pp. 29-56

Heinrich Heine recalls his school days in his brilliant prose pastiche Ideen. Buch: Le Grand (1827): “One has an easier time with natural history, not so many changes can occur there, and we have accurate copper engravings of monkeys [Affen], kangaroos, zebras, rhinoceros, etc. ...

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2. Name that Varmint: From Gregor to Josephine

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pp. 57-80

This chapter is principally constructed about two taxonomic questions—“What is Gregor Samsa?” and “What is Josephine the Singer?”—and the possible implications of the indeterminate answers offered by the works in which these characters appear: the first animal narrative ...

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3. (Con)Versions of Cats and Mice and Other Mouse Traps

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pp. 81-108

In Fall 1920, using almost as few different words as Dr. Seuss in Green Eggs and Ham, Franz Kafka wrote down a seventy-six-word narrative that has come down to us with the title, courtesy of Max Brod, “Kleine Fabel” (“Little Fable”), and has served, if not as an entry text for beginning ...

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4. “If you could see her through my eyes . . .”: Semitic Simiantics

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pp. 109-138

Chapter 2 examined the murine and Jewish identifications of Kafka’s Josephine the singer, that is, of Josephine the performer of other people’s creations. During the Era of the Jewish Question, Jews were usually assumed to be incapable of the authentic cultural production by creative artists; ...

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5. Italian Lizards and Literary Politics I: Carrying the Torch and Getting Singed

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pp. 139-154

In a diary entry written some time between March 26 and May 27, 1911, Franz Kafka appears to take his friend Max Brod’s new novel, Die Jüdinnen (the Jewesses), to task for failing to offer or even conjecture about a possible solution to the Jewish Question. ...

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6. Italian Lizards and Literary Politics II: Deer I Say It

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pp. 155-169

While the lizard’s signifying tail is apparently without equal, the wise lizard is not without precedent. In Luther’s translation of the Book of Proverbs the Eidechse is one of “four things . . . which are smallest on earth yet wise beyond the wisest” (30:24). ...

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7. The Raw and the Cooked in the Old/New World, or Talk to the Animals

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pp. 170-187

Ninety-five years after its composition and publication in Martin Buber’s journal Der Jude, Franz Kafka’s story of contemporary (1917) Zionism (?),1 Palestine (?), colonialism (?), diaspora (?), and orientalist (?) representations of Jews (?), Arabs (?), and Gentile Europeans (?), “Schakale und Araber” ...

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8. Dogged by Destiny: “Lupus est homo homini, non homo, quom quails sit non navit”

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pp. 188-220

During the Enlightenment, the apprehension of the feared beast within1 —that the animal lies beneath the veneer of our moral and rational comportment and thereby undermines our sense of ourselves as the exception to all other creatures that are taxonomically classified by genus and species—was stirred by tales of feral children and the discovery of the Wild Boy of Aveyron. ...

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Afterword. “It’s clear as the light of day”: The Shoah and the Human/Animal Great Divide

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pp. 221-232

Soon after the Nazi seizure of power in 1933, the Berlin Jewish writer Gertrud Kolmar learned that her collection, Die Frau und die Tiere ( The woman and the animals), a selection of poems drawn from three of her verse cycles, Weibliches Bildnis (Female portrait), Das Kind ( The child), ...

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Acknowledgments

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pp. 233-236

I had always considered “bestial” to be simply one more accidental attribute—such as “amoral,” “arrogant,” “criminal,” “deceitful,” “egoistic,” “greedy,” “misanthropic,” and so on—that might be added to the identification of “the Jew” as abject other. I had read Derrida’s early writings on the “Question of the Animal” ...

Notes

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pp. 237-340

References

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pp. 341-384

Index

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pp. 385-404