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British Jewry and the Holocaust

British Jewry and the Holocaust


  • Date Published: April 1993
  • availability: Available
  • format: Hardback
  • isbn: 9780521432344

£ 56.00

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About the Authors
  • This is the first book to examine the response of the British Jewish community to the destruction of the Jewish community of mainland Europe in World War II. Richard Bolchover charts the response of leading Jews and of Jewish organisations to the unfolding tragedy of Europe's Jews. In the process he raises controversial questions about the Anglo-Jewish community's priorities, and the way in which it organised itself. This study of Jewish political thoughts and culture marks a serious and provocative departure from the traditionally dominant trend in Anglo-Jewish historiography.

    • Major new study of an important British response to central historical event of the twentieth century
    • Bolchover's analysis of British Jewry's political culture will inevitably cause controversy, and should generate very wide review coverage
    • Should appeal to non-specialist audience within Jewish community
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    Reviews & endorsements

    'This is absorbing, frightening, upsetting, essential reading. If Anglo-Jewry is to acquire a conviction about its values, this period of history must be re-examined; those institutions which so failed fellow-Jews must be reassessed; routes to influence within the community must be questioned. Finally, those who still remember those days must be asked, before it is too late, why so little was done.' Julia Neuberger, The Times

    'Fifty years after the uprising in the Warsaw ghetto, a 32-year-old English Jew takes a cathartic scalpel to what he plainly regards as his community's abandonment of their European kin. The picture Bolchover paints is of a community trapped by its own values, haunted by the fear of domestic anti-Semitism and debilitated by internal conflicts … He has … made a poignant and important contribution to Holocaust studies.' Ian McIntyre, The Independent

    'British Jewry and the Holocaust is the first book of its kind to examine the role of British Jews, individuals and organisations, during the war, and the author's findings and conclusions do not make comfortable reading. [The book] should be read by every thinking and caring Jew. For the apparent failure to react or to be willing to put pressure on the government to act against Nazism and the resulting Holocaust is a stain on the record of British Jewry, and it would appear from Richard Bolchover's disturbing and thought-provoking book that the term 'Never again' should apply not only to the horror itself, but also to the reactions of civilised society.' Jewish Gazette

    'This is not a book for bedtime reading. It drags to the surface a most painful memory, exposing it to public view. The writing of it is an act of great courage, for which its author deserves our profound thanks.' Geoffrey Alderman, Jewish Chronicle

    '... Richard Bolchover asks: 'Why was it that the Holocaust made such little impact on Anglo-Jewry; why in hindsight do British Jews appear insensitive?' These are painful questions for a young Jewish scholar, but Bolchover pursues them unflinchingly ... a poignant and important contribution to Holocaust studies.' Ian McIntyre, The Independent

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    Product details

    • Date Published: April 1993
    • format: Hardback
    • isbn: 9780521432344
    • length: 224 pages
    • dimensions: 229 x 152 x 16 mm
    • weight: 0.5kg
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    Part I. Knowing and Believing
    Part II. The Institutions: Introduction: The Anglo-Jewish Community
    1. Communal priorities
    2. The institutional response to the Holocaust
    Part III. The Ideologies: Introduction: social and political philosophies
    3. The politics of hope
    4. The politics of fear
    5. The Jewish fighting model

  • Author

    Richard Bolchover, University of Oxford

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