My copy of Anders Gerdmar’s Roots of Theological Anti-Semitism: German Biblical Interpretation and the Jews, from Herder and Semler to Kittel and Bultmann (Brill, 2009) has arrived. This is going to be a really good read.
Here is a listing of the volume’s parts and chapters:
Part I: Enlightenment Exegesis and the Jews
The Jews in Enlightenment Exegesis from Deism to de Wette
Johann Salomo Semler: Dejudaising Christianity
Johann Gottfried Herder: The Volk Concept and the Jews
F. D. E. Schleiermacher: Enlightenment Religion and Judaism
W. M. L. de Wette: Judaism as Degenerated Hebraism
Ferdinand Christian Baur: Judaism as an Historical Antipode of Christianity
David Friedrich Strauss: Judaism in Continuity and Discontinuity with Christianity
Albrecht Ritschl: Kulturprotestantismus and the Jews
The History of Religions School and the Jews—An Historical Turn?
Part II: Salvation-Historical Exegesis and the Jews: From Tholuck to Schlatter
Friedrich August Tholuck: “Salvation Comes from the Jews”
Johann Tobias Beck: Organic Continuity Between Judaism and Christianity
Franz Delitzsch: Pioneering Scholarship in Judaism
Hermann Leberecht Strack: Missions to and Defence of Jews
Adolf Schlatter and Judaism: Great Erudition and Fierce Opposition
Part III: The Form Critics and the Jews
Karl Ludwig Schmidt: A Chosen People and a ‘Jewish Problem’
Martin Dibelius: Ambivalence to Jews and Judaism
Rudolf Bultmann: Liberal and Anti-Jewish
Part IV: Nazi Exegesis and the Jews
Gerhard Kittel: Jewish Unheil Theologically Founded
Walter Grundmann: Towards a Non-Jewish Jesus
Why is such a book important? It is only a scratching of the surface after all, and a painful kind of scratching at that. People of good will would certainly prefer to leave such distasteful matters to lie undisturbed, yes? No. The best will is the will toward openly facing the truth of a matter, and realistically dealing with the consequences. The antisemitic attitudes of several of the above-mentioned German critics and various other scholars who were working on Old and New Testament subjects need to be understood to have really and truly affected their work. We might, as an erudite friend suggested to me last night at dinner, rather ignore these antisemitic ideas of theirs as not having any direct effect upon their work, as is generally done in the case of Ezra Pound. But Ezra Pound was a poet, not working on Jewish subjects. If all his poems were on Jewish subjects, there would be parity. However, whilst these men were establishing a foundational approach to ancient Jewish literature, their opinions of the civilization that produced them were absolutely apalling; therefore, it must be admitted that their explanations of how this literature was produced reflect directly their low opinion of the abilities of the ancient Jews. It is an uncomfortable and ugly subject, but one that has been swept under the carpet for too long.
This will be a very interesting read.