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Export-Import Theory and the Racialization of Anti-Semitism: Turkish- and Arab-Only Prevention Programs in Germany

  • Esra Özyürek (a1)
Abstract

Since the year 2000, remembering the Holocaust and fighting anti-Semitism have come to be accepted as cornerstones of European identity. The flip side of this development has been racialization of Muslims by singling them out as the main contemporary anti-Semites. After discussing the emergence of the concept “Muslim anti-Semitism,” I scrutinize government-issued reports and anti-Semitism-prevention programs in Germany. I show how the recent wave of struggle against anti-Semitism depicts Muslims as outsiders who bring unwanted ideologies, evaluates their anti-Semitism as more dangerous than that of right-wing German nationals, and attributes to Muslims culturally transmitted psychopathologies that make Muslim nations prone to anti-Semitism. Experts locate the root of Turkish anti-Semitism in their “myth of tolerance toward Jews,” and of Arab anti-Semitism in their sense of a “false victimhood” and “desire for power and pride.” Educators focus on each nationality separately to distinguish these alleged group-specific myths and feelings. Efforts and money that go into producing nation-specific Muslim anti-Semitisms depict a new Germany that has fully liberated itself from any anti-democratic tendencies surviving from its Nazi past. It also obscures connections between anti-Semitism and anti-Muslim racism, both of which are active forces in mainstream German society.

Copyright
Corresponding author
E.G.Ozyurek@lse.ac.uk
References
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