Antisemitism in Europe

A hatred or discrimination against the Jewish community for their beliefs is known as antisemitism. Although it originated in the Christian and pre-Christian era, it’s still prevalent in modern Europe.

20th-century antisemitism was at its barbaric peak when approximately six million Jews were killed in Nazi Germany,under the fascist reign of Adolf Hitler. Although not to the same extreme extent, a new wave of hatred has spawned in Europe, and consists mostly of far-right thinkers.

The Middle Ages

Much of the antisemitism in the middle ageswas centered around the belief that Jews were responsible for JesusChrist’s death. A number of Jewish communities were massacred in 1095 duringthe time of the Crusades.

Many Jews were also persecuted during thedeadly plague “Black Death”. It was believed that the Jews were poisoning thewells and spreading the disease. Consequently, this saw a widespreadpersecution of Jewish communities.

Most of their residence limited to secludedareas called hettos’, the Jewish people weren’t allowed to own land, or domost jobs.

In Europe

By the time of the Renaissance movement,another wave of xenophobia had plagued Europe. Western Europe saw severelimitations to be placed on Jews by monarchs because of a growing fear ofcompetition since Jews mostly held banking jobs.

However, as the banking system developed, anew term “Court Jew” began to be used for Jewish people who were businessmenand acted as the state’s tax collectors. Joseph Süß Oppenheimer wasone such Jew.

The Polish-LithuanianCommonwealth borders held most of Europe’s population of Jews. The Jews livingin Poland enjoyed religious and cultural autonomy as well. However, thisfreedom too was short lived as Poland saw the Cossack uprising of 1648, whichdestroyed many Jewish communities.

When Poland was partitioned by Russia, manyPolish Jews found themselves under the rule of Russia. The Pale of Settlement,signed by the Empress of Russia, prohibited Jews from spreading in the Russianempire. However, an exception was made for the Jews who lived in major citieslike Kiev and Moscow.

Modern Antisemitism

Before the 19th century,antisemitism in Europe was limited to a general hatred of Jewish community andhadn’t yet been colored with a racial tinge. However, the beginningof the 19th century saw a burst in racial tensions as it spreadthroughout Europe.

The seed of the idea was that the Jews were ofan inferior race. The Rothschild Family strengthened this theory further. Anumber of pogroms took birth in the early 1900s leading to the persecution of alot of Jewish communities.

The Holocaust

By this time, Europe had the mostconcentration of Jews. The 20th century saw a virulent hatredtowards the Jewish community. The spark was the German defeat in World War 1and 1929’s economic crisis.

This coupled with the rise of toxicnationalism across Europe led to the infamous reign of Nazi Germany. TheHolocaust was a mass genocide of Jews and is one of the most horrifyingincidents in modern Jewish history.

Antisemitism in the 21st century &Europe’s Muslim Population

Hatred against the Jews in the 21st centurymostly spawns from the Israel-Palestine conflict. Consequently, it has beenobserved the Muslim youth harbors fundamentalist ideas, which leads toisolationist tendencies, fear, hatred, and a general paranoia.

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