Polish-Jewish Relations, Anti-Semitism and National Identity
The article presents the results of surveys done on anti-Semitism in Poland in 1992, which in part were compared to results from a 1996 survey. The group, under the author's direction researched anti-Semitism in the context of Poles' attitudes towards other nations, as well as in terms of their own national identity. Two types of anti-Semitic attitudes were observed: traditional, religiously grounded anti-Semitism, and anti-Semitism rooted in anti-Semitic political ideology, of the type that has developed since in the French Revolution. Traditional anti-Semitism occurs only among older people who are not well educated and live in rural areas; increased education results in the disappearance of this type of anti-Semitism. Modern anti-Semitism, on the other hand occurs among both the lowest and most highly educated groups in society. Moreover, from 1992 to 1996, the percentage of the respondents declaring anti-Semitic views increased. At the same time, however, there was also a larger increase in the number of respondents declaring anti-anti-Semitic views, which has meant that there has been a clear polarization of attitudes. Having a university education makes a person more likely to be ill-disposed toward anti-Semitism. Nevertheless, the attitude of Poles toward Jews cannot be described simply on the basis of anti-Semitic attitudes. The researchers noted that there was also an attitude of "not liking Jews", which was less engaged than the anti-Semitic views, and to a large extent a result of the content comprising Polish national identity. The model of Polishness assumes a Romantic-Messianic image of the Polish nation. According to this model, Poles see themselves as being distinguished by their noble fulfillment of obligations, even when it is to their own detriment, particularly with respect to symbolic Jews and Germans. Researchers also assumed that there was a particular kind of competition between Poles and Jews with respect to the moral superiority of their respective nations. The results from 1992 in part confirmed this hypothesis.
Antisemitism Antisemitism: Discourse Jewish - Non - Jewish Relations Main Topic: Antisemitism Surveys Attitudes to Jews Nationalism
Link to article in JSTOR, Polish-Jewish Relations, Anti-Semitism and National Identity
Polish-Jewish Relations, Anti-Semitism and National Identity. 2002: 25-52. https://archive.jpr.org.uk/object-994