University of Passau©

Israel-related Antisemitism in Germany

In response to the massacres of October 7, we have witnessed an upsurge of public antisemitism around the world, including Germany. Yet, the susceptibility to antisemitism has been a resilient societal undercurrent in Germany and beyond well before the attacks and Israel’s military response. Empirical studies show that a generally hostile attitude towards the Jewish state correlate with, and pave the way to, the discrimination against and dehumanization of Jewish Israelis as well as overt antisemitism. The talk establishes a definition and criteria for identifying Israel-related antisemitism. The lecture then examines main features, agents, and factors driving contemporary Israel-related antisemitism in Germany and in a broader international context. A special focus is on the role of social media as facilitators of Manichean world-views on the Middle East, antisemitic stereotypes projected on Israel, and anti-Jewish hate speech, both overt and modernized.

Lars Rensmann is Professor of Political Science and Comparative Government at the University of Passau, Germany. Before joining Passau’s faculty, he was Professor for European Politics and Society and Founding Director of the Research Centre for the Study of Democratic Cultures and Politics at the University of Groningen. His work focuses on comparative global and European politics; German, European and American governments, political cultures and systems; parties and party system change in Europe and the USA; democracies and crises of democracies in the global age; populism, populist governments, and populist parties in Germany, Europe, and around the world; the (comparative) politics of climate change; democracy, autocracy, authoritarianism, nationalism, racism, and antisemitism as well as human rights in comparative perspective; international democratic, critical and political theory and its contemporary relevance, including global constitutionalism and European integration; global political cultures and sports cultures; the history of genocide in the age of the Holocaust and its legacy for democracies.

Datum: 21.05.2024