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When was antisemitism developed? How (EUMC) Define Antisemitism

When was antisemitism developed?

Jews had been excluded from mainstream European life, and separated out in many different ways for centuries. During the 19th century some countries allowed Jews to take part in modern society. Once legalrestrictions were lifted, many Jews became very involved with the societies in which they lived, often taking leading roles in arts, politics, science and business.
In societies that were undergoing changes many people felt insecure and some felt that the Jews were still outsiders. This led to resentment of those Jews who were successful.
In 1879 a German journalist, Wilhelm Marr,
Willhelm Marr
first used the term ‘antisemite’ to describe people who hated Jews. He defined the Jews as a separate ‘race’. He drew on old Christian prejudices against Judaism. He argued that everything that was wrong in Europe was wrong because of the Jews.
In contrast, Marr identified what he called the Aryan peoples, from Northern Europe, as the highest type of human being. He defined them as being biologically superior and claimed they were only held back by Jewish power.

How We Define Antisemitism

Though the manifestation of antisemitism takes many forms, the most widely used definition of contemporary antisemitism is the Working Definition produced in 2005 by the European Union Monitoring Centre on Racism and Xenophobia (EUMC), an EU body which monitors racism and antisemitism in EU Member States (the EUMC has since been succeeded by the European Union Agency for Fundamental Rights (FRA)).
The FRA has urged all member states of the EU to use this definition as a basis for dealing with antisemitism and it was drawn up after wide consultation including with Jewish organizations. The Working Definition, signed off by the Management Board of the FRA comprising 27 appointees of the 27 EU governments (plus the Council of Europe and Commission appointees), can reasonably be assumed to reflect the views of each of those governments.
The UK government’s response to the Report of the All Party Parliamentary Inquiry into Antisemitism was that the Macpherson definition of racism, which defines a racist incident as  “any incident which is perceived to be racist by the victim or any other person”,  includes antisemitism. Although the UK government did not adopt the EUMC Working Definition, implicit in their response is an acknowledgment that since the Macpherson definition is even broader than the EUMC Working Definition, the latter is subsumed into the former.
According to the EUMC,
Antisemitism is a certain perception of Jews, which may be expressed as hatred toward Jews. Rhetorical and physical manifestations of antisemitism are directed toward Jewish or non-Jewish individuals and/or their property, toward Jewish community institutions and religious facilities. In addition, such manifestations could also target the state of Israel, conceived as a Jewish collectivity. Antisemitism frequently charges Jews with conspiring to harm humanity, and it is often used to blame Jews for ‘why things go wrong’.
The EUMC then goes on to cite specific examples of antisemitism including:
  • Calling for, aiding, or justifying the killing or harming of Jews in the name of a radical ideology or an extremist view of religion.
  • Making mendacious, dehumanizing, demonizing, or stereotypical allegations about Jews as such or the power of Jews as collective — such as, especially but not exclusively, the myth about a world Jewish conspiracy or of Jews controlling the media, economy, government or other societal institutions.
  • Accusing Jews as a people of being responsible for real or imagined wrongdoing committed by a single Jewish person or group, or even for acts committed by non-Jews.
  • Denying the fact, scope, mechanisms (e.g. gas chambers) or intentionality of the genocide of the Jewish people at the hands of National Socialist Germany and its supporters and accomplices during World War II (the Holocaust).
  • Accusing the Jews as a people, or Israel as a state, of inventing or exaggerating the Holocaust.
  • Accusing Jewish citizens of being more loyal to Israel, or to the alleged priorities of Jews worldwide, than to the interests of their own nations.
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Richard Kuper said…
This so-called working definition is not the real definition of antisemitism proposed by the EUMC which you can find here:
That posting gives some background to the 'working definition' which anyone seduced by it ought to be aware of. You can find a fuller critique of the 'working definition' by me at
Broadly speaking, the effect of the 'definition'(and the aim of many of those who drew it up) was to make criticism of Israel suspect and to place the onus on critics to prove they were not being antisemitic. It has, unfortunately, little to do with fighting real antisemitism in the real world.
For a more useful definition see e.g. that produced by the University and College Union in the UK at
Hello there, is that your only portal or you personally run some more?

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