German Politics and the 'Jewish Question', 1914–1919
Lucia J. Linares offers the first sustained examination of the ways in which questions about German-Jewish citizenship and religious, national identity – namely the "Jewish Question" – shaped the politics of Imperial Germany in its final years, influencing the processes of parliamentarisation and democratisation. The "Jewish Question" still tends to be interpreted with hindsight, that is, in the context of the Holocaust and from a social or cultural historical perspective. While considering the short- and long-term effects the "Jewish Question" had on the rise of German antisemitism, this new study stresses its contingency and ambivalence. Jewish questions, this book argues, revealed the paradoxes of German state-building and the difficulties of breaking down older forms of corporate identity for the sake of national-cultural homogeneity. Linares presents a new interpretation of the role that the "problem" of German Jewry played in the political debates and decisions that paved the way for the Weimar Republic.
"In this fascinating new book [...] Linares draws a political cultural connection between these historical debates over the "Jewish Question" and contemporary debates over so-called Leitkultur in the Federal Republic, namely whether Germanness should be defined ethno-culturally or primarily linguistically."Eric Kurlander, Francia recensio 2022/2
"[E]ine durchaus gewichtige Wortmeldung zu einem zweifellos zentralen Thema der jüngeren deutschen Geschichte."Jürgen Frölich, Jahrbuch zur Liberalismus-Forschung 2, 2021