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The Jewish Question: A Marxist Interpretation (Merit)
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The Jewish Question: A Marxist Interpretation (Merit)

4.07  ·  Rating details ·  29 Ratings  ·  3 Reviews
Traces the historical rationalizations of anti-Semitism to the fact that Jews -- in the centuries preceding the domination of industrial capitalism -- were forced to become a "people-class" of merchants and moneylenders. Leon explains how in times of social crisis renewed Jew-hatred is incited by the capitalists to mobilize reactionary forces against the labor movement and ...more
Paperback, 272 pages
Published June 1st 1971 by Pathfinder Press (NY) (first published 1950)
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Delbert
Mar 26, 2008 rated it really liked it
Recommended to Delbert by: the SWP
Useful if you're interested in the debate between Zionism and Internationalism going on among Jewish socialists/communists in the early half of the 20th century, or in a Marxist understanding of the roots of antisemitism. Leon overuses the word "puerile," but other than that wrote a pretty excellent book. Published by Pathfinder, so it is approved by some Trotskyists. Author participated in various resistance activities in occupied Belgium and was captured and executed by the Nazis in 1944.

this
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Daniel
Nov 02, 2008 added it
Pretty compelling. Leon wrote this in occupied Europe. It makes devastating challenges to myths I grew up with about the formation of Judaism. For starters, it simply isn't true that Christians were constantly trying to convert Jews. To the contrary, Jews were so useful to nobles and kings that in certain periods they were fined for converting to Christianity. Leon makes the argument that the Jewish faith was not preserved DESPITE the forces of history, but that it was preserved BECAUSE of them. ...more
Bhaskar Sunkara
Jan 28, 2010 marked it as to-read
Apparently this is one of the more prominent Marxist texts on Jewish socio-economic history. A Trotskyist, Abram Leon wrote this in his early 20s. He died in Auschwitz when he was just 26.
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Abraham (Abram) Leon (1918–1944) (born Abraham Wejnstok), was a Belgian Jewish Trotskyist party leader and theorist.

Leon was born in Warsaw in 1918. His parents, adherents of "official petit-bourgeois Zionism", left Poland to pursue the Zionist dream in Palestine; the family quickly re-emigrated in 1926 to Belgium. Leon became a member and then leader of the Belgian branch of Hashomer Hatzair, a
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