New Book Explores Roots of Left-Wing Anti-Semitism: News Releases: The Independent Institute

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News Release
February 20, 2024

New Book Explores Roots of Left-Wing Anti-Semitism

Oakland, CA—As a nation, we face an ugly new surge of anti-Semitism. Why? What keeps us from celebrating the universal values that Jews brought into the world centuries ago?

Author Benjamin Ginsberg (Independent Institute Research Fellow) in his new book, The New American Anti-Semitism: The Left, the Right, and the Jews, notes that Jewish Americans have historically been on their guard against animus from the political right, and properly so. But today, he argues, the most virulent forms of anti-Semitism stem from toxic forms of identity politics percolating—and now erupting—on the political Left.

Ginsberg, also author of The Fatal Embrace: Jews and the State (The University of Chicago Press) offers a clarion call—not only to Jews, but to all Americans. With piercing clarity, he exposes the disturbing face of a new, “progressive” anti-Semitism.

“America must protect its Jewish citizens,” says Ginsberg, a professor of political science at Johns Hopkins University. “And history shows what consequences could come for the Jews if they fail to learn the history of their diaspora in Spain, Germany, Russia, or Egypt,” he adds.

For thousands of years, Jewish people thrived in nations where they settled, added to the general prosperity, and gained public prominence. Then after rising in wealth and influence, Jews have historically found themselves attacked, tormented, exiled, or worse. Ginsberg writes that, because of their long and tragic history, Jews today must always be on guard in every society in which they find themselves.

America, says Ginsberg, has been uniquely welcoming to Jews, and Jewish innovators and entrepreneurs have been uniquely good for America, playing key roles in propelling the United States to economic, scientific, and technological leadership.

To maintain this historically unique harmony—and to counteract the fickleness of both left and right—Jews must ally themselves with Americans willing to live by universal values (some of which originated in ancient Judaism). Unfortunately, that no longer includes many of today’s political and cultural elites, as the events since October 7th are revealing.

Author Biography: Benjamin Ginsberg is a Research Fellow at the Independent Institute and Professor of Political Science and Chair of the Center for Advanced Governmental Studies at Johns Hopkins University. He is the author, coauthor, or editor of more than thirty books. He received his PhD from the University of Chicago and was previously a professor of government at Cornell University.

For more information, contact Robert Ade, [email protected], or (510) 635-3690.


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