CFP: [18th] Representations of Jews in the Long Eighteenth Century (ASECS 3/27-3/30/08' 9/15/07)

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Jeremy Webster
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In his article “Juif” for the Encyclopédie ou Dictionnaire raisonné des
sciences, des arts et des métiers, the Chevalier de Jaucourt maintains that
the fate of Europe had become inextricably linked to its treatment of Jews:
“scattered in our day with greater security than they had ever had in all
the countries of Europe where commerce reigns, they have become instruments
by means of which the most distant nations can converse and correspond with
each other.” Jaucourt concludes, “They are like the pegs and nails that one
uses in a great building, and which are necessary to join all of its parts.”

Was the chevalier right in this assertion? Were Jews the "pegs and nails"
of eighteenth-century commerce and culture? Although Jewish figures often
seem marginal in many of the major texts from the period, do they actually
serve a more central role than scholars have generally seen? This session
will explore answers to these questions by bringing together papers on
representations of Jews, whether anti-Semitic or philo-Semitic, to explore
their contributions to the development of eighteenth-century history,
literature, culture, and ideas. Papers on any works that depict Jewish
experiences and/or representations of Jews in the long eighteenth century
are welcome.

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Received on Fri Aug 31 2007 - 09:02:58 EDT