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The 'Jewish question', Hungarian sociology and the normalization of antisemitism

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Abstract:

Voros's article is a historical exploration of the idea of the 'Jewish question'. It follows a semantic approach and argues that the 'Jewish question' is an ideological construct that played a principal role in the development and dissemination of anti-Jewish ideas and the problematization of the presence of Jews in modern Central Europe. Voros focuses on the development of the concept of the 'Jewish question' within sociological theory, and the role of sociology in its general advance in public discourse in Hungary between 1900 and 1920. She describes a discursive process in the course of which antisemitic discourse gradually lost its designation as 'antisemitism' and was transformed into what was seen as legitimate social analysis and political critique. Voros suggests that historians of Central Europe pay more analytical attention to the history of the concept and use the term 'Jewish question' as a historically specific object of analysis rather than an ambivalent analytical category.

Keywords: 'Jewish question'; Central European history; Hungary; Jews; Karl Marx; Oszkar Jaszi; Peter Agoston; Werner Sombart; antisemitism; sociology

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: https://doi.org/10.1080/00313221003714353

Publication date: 2010-05-01

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