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Is There an Anti-Jewish Bias in Today's University?

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Published on Apr 23, 2012

The widespread cooperation of German academicians with the Nazi regime and the contributions of these scholars to the advancement of the so-called "Jewish Question" are well-established facts. Nothing similar to this radical betrayal of the humanities during the Third Reich is evident in American and European universities today. At the same time, many of our campuses have become hospitable to certain political and ideological currents of thought that issue in actions and statements inimical to many Jewish students and professors. A review of contemporary debates about two issues of particular concern to Jews—the Holocaust and the State of Israel—suggests that we may be witnessing the emergence of some new versions of the "Jewish Question."

Professor Rosenfeld is the editor of William Blake: Essays (1969) and The Collected Poetry of John Wheelwright (1972); he is also the author of numerous scholarly and critical articles on American poetry, Jewish writers, and the literature of the Holocaust. In his most recent book, The End of the Holocaust, Rosenfeld contends that the proliferation of books, films, television programs, museums, and public commemorations related to the Holocaust has, perversely, brought about a diminution of its meaning and a denigration of its memory.

Prof. Rosenfeld's lecture was part of a two-day symposium, "Betrayal of the Humanities: The University During the Third Reich," sponsored by the Center for Holocaust and Genocide Studies at the University of Minnesota.

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