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15 JEWISH SELF-IMAG E I N TH E POSTWAR WORL D AMBIVALENCE O F LIBERALIS M IN THEI R STRUGGL E fo r th e fullnes s o f emancipation , th e Jew s relied mos t heavil y o n th e hel p o f liberal s an d the y redefine d thei r identity i n term s o f individua l freedom . Th e ideal s an d th e tempe r o f liberalism wer e range d solidl y o n th e sid e o f Jewish people , a s the y struggled t o overcom e th e effect s o f religiou s prejudice s an d ethni c zealotry. Th e conservativ e mood , apar t fro m part y platforms , resente d any kin d o f change , an d esteeme d highl y th e wort h o f prejudice, a s a helpful brak e against the changin g an d disintegratin g forces tha t operat e in modern society . In th e cas e o f Zionism , however , liberalis m wa s ambivalent . Th e sympathies o f liberals were with th e Jews, but thei r ideal s called for th e solution o f Jewish homelessnes s throug h th e securin g o f th e right s o f individuals, whereve r the y happene d t o live . Alread y i n th e day s o f Herzl, the antisemites o f Russia, German y an d Franc e found i t easier t o sympathize wit h th e caus e o f a Jewish homelan d tha n th e liberals , th e old-time friends o f Jewis h people . England wa s a special case, since its imperial interests coincide d fro m time to time with its idealistic concern fo r th e fate o f Eastern Europea n Jewry. Th e "Jewis h homeland " wa s needed , i t woul d b e said , no t fo r the solution o f "the Jewish question" in England, but to provide for th e stream of refugees fro m th e East. Also, in England, th e biblical traditio n 3 H 315 Jewish Self-Image in the Postwar World was stron g an d th e Zionis t idea l awakene d echoe s o f ancien t romanti c visions. As J. L. Talmon put it : "For on e thing , n o Jewish historian , whateve r hi s evaluatio n o f th e various factor s involve d i n th e restoratio n o f Jewis h statehood , ca n ignore th e fact tha t Zionism woul d neve r have had a chance for succes s if centurie s o f Christia n teachin g an d worship , liturg y an d legen d ha d not conditione d th e Wester n nation s t o respon d almos t instinctivel y t o the word s 'Zion ' an d 'Israel, ' an d thu s t o se e i n th e Zionis t idea l no t a romantic chimer a o r a n imperialisti c desig n t o wres t a country fro m it s actual inhabitants , bu t th e consummatio n o f a n eterna l promis e an d hope." * Anglo-American liberal s wer e particularl y sensitiv e t o th e charg e o f injuring th e Palestinian Arabs, in the effort t o render justice to the caus e of world Jewry. After th e establishmen t o f the stat e o f Israel , th e caus e of th e Ara b refugee s clashe d i n th e America n conscienc e wit h tha t o f the Jews in Israel . A good illustratio n o f this conflict i s seen in th e hesitan t an d equivo cal posture of the Christian Century Magazine toward Zionism an d Israel. While thi s centra l orga n o f th e non-Fundamentalis t Protestant s wa s naturally sympathetic t o the plight o f Jewis h refugees , i t fought a persistent rear-guard actio n agains t the establishmen t o f the Jewish state . In hi s study , "America n Protestantis m an d a Jewish State, " Herz l...

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Additional Information

ISBN
9780814763551
Related ISBN
9780814746929
MARC Record
OCLC
859686344
Pages
232
Launched on MUSE
2012-07-31
Language
English
Open Access
No
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