chapter  15
34 Pages

Towards a General Theory of Jewish Political Interests and Behavior

WithPeter Y. Medding

Since the Emancipation, Jews in the West have been citizens of many states embracing various forms of government. According to the conventional wisdom about Jewish political behavior, Jews, regardless of differences in social structure and regime, have been consistently liberal or Left in their political responses and attitudes, rather than conservative or Right. Most theorizing about Jewish political behavior, therefore, has attempted to explain this supposedly universal phenomenon. In fact, the conventional wisdom about Jewish political behavior was based upon the assumption that the “natural” Jewish political response was liberal and Left, and that this was anomalous given the class position of Jews in Western societies.