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A Convenient Hatred
Cover of A Convenient Hatred
A Convenient Hatred
The History of Antisemitism
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A Convenient Hatred chronicles a very particular hatred through powerful stories that allow readers to see themselves in the tarnished mirror of history. It raises important questions about the consequences of our assumptions and beliefs and the ways we, as individuals and as members of a society, make distinctions between us and them, right and wrong, good and evil. These questions are both universal and particular.

A Convenient Hatred chronicles a very particular hatred through powerful stories that allow readers to see themselves in the tarnished mirror of history. It raises important questions about the consequences of our assumptions and beliefs and the ways we, as individuals and as members of a society, make distinctions between us and them, right and wrong, good and evil. These questions are both universal and particular.

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About the Author-
  • Phyllis Goldstein has served most notably as researcher and writer on such publications as the latest edition of Facing History and Ourselves: Holocaust and Human Behavior, as well as The Jews of Poland and Race and Membership in American History. She also worked for more than 20 years in publishing, serving as an author, editor, and editorial director.

Reviews-
  • Publisher's Weekly

    December 19, 2011
    After a thoughtful foreword by Sir Harold Evans, staff writer and researcher Goldstein (Holocaust and Human Behavior) follows a chronological trajectory, opening each chapter with a detailed snapshot of the time period under discussion, and often including a map to help locate readers unfamiliar with the terrain and shifting national boundaries. She begins with the first recorded incidence of antisemitism in 586 BCE, when the Babylonians destroyed the Temple in Jerusalem, and tracks its development across the ages, ending with a chapter on "Antisemitism Today," in which she warns that it is "still a force in the world." Thoroughly researched and meticulous in its treatment of a bleak topic, Goldstein's study does not rest on a recitation of the atrocities of WWII; rather, hers is a work that seeks to dismantle a complex prejudice in order to more swiftly do away with it. As president of Human Rights First Elisa Massimino points out, "The branding of Jews as scapegoats for ancient and modern ills remains a powerful underlying factor" in its continuation.

  • Library Journal

    February 1, 2012

    Facing History and Ourselves is a well-known organization that, according to its own literature, "fosters democracy and combats anti-Semitism, racism, and other hatreds through education." The organization has had great success working with students to confront the issues in their own lives by looking at them through the broader perspective of history. This particular volume is an excellent history of a long hatred. Readers need not be Jewish to appreciate the particular virulence shown toward an oppressed minority through history. Goldstein (senior writer, Facing History and Ourselves) tells the stories of some of the courageous individuals who have made a stand, e.g., Emile Zola, and discusses how various historical figures have officially considered Jews. For example, Napoleon instituted reforms that benefited Jews. The book could be read in conjunction with the documentary The Longest Hatred: A Revealing History of Anti-Semitism. The illustrations, woodcuts, photos, and maps ably assist the text. VERDICT Not aiming to be comprehensive, Goldstein uses representative examples in a lively, conversational way that will speak particularly to advanced high school students and stimulate discussion among them. That said, there is not much new material for informed adult readers.--Paul Kaplan, Lake Villa Dist. Lib., IL

    Copyright 2012 Library Journal, LLC Used with permission.

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A Convenient Hatred
The History of Antisemitism
Phyllis Goldstein
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