The best books on antisemitism 📚

Browse the best books on antisemitism as recommended by authors, experts, and creators. Along with notes on why they recommend those books.

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Book cover of Constantine's Sword: The Church and the Jews, A History

Constantine's Sword: The Church and the Jews, A History

By James Christopher Carroll

Why this book?

In Constantine’s Sword: The Church and the Jews, James Carroll, a former Catholic priest turned journalist and novelist, delivers a powerful indictment of the politicized religion that from the time of Constantine the Great persecuted heretics, non-Romans, and, most of all, Jews. Carroll’s historical account is colorful and accurate, but what this book mostly does is exorcise a demon that plagued the author personally for years: his shared responsibility as a Catholic believer and official for an anti-Semitic tradition that helped generate the Holocaust. This is a stirring job of writing that looks forward to Carroll’s later work as…

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Book cover of Memoir of a Fascist Childhood: A Boy in Mosley's Britain

Memoir of a Fascist Childhood: A Boy in Mosley's Britain

By Trevor Grundy

Why this book?

This is a through-the-looking-glass journey into the darker side of British politics. Grundy’s parents were violently anti-Semitic and obsessed with Oswald Mosley, and he himself became active in Mosley’s post-war Union Movement, before turning away from Fascism. It is surreal, scary, and hilarious by turns. It also gives important insights into the origins of today’s Far Right politics.

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The best books on sidelights on British politics

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Book cover of Strangers in the Land: Blacks, Jews, Post-Holocaust America

Strangers in the Land: Blacks, Jews, Post-Holocaust America

By Eric J. Sundquist

Why this book?

“Black-Jewish relations” occurs everywhere African Americans and Jewish Americans engage. Scholars and journalists have considered “Black-Jewish relations” in music and film, in economic and social spheres, in education and housing. Sundquist offers an incredibly rich exploration of this broad cultural landscape shaped by African and Jewish Americans. He explores the ways both groups struggled to understand themselves and engage with each other through literature and other forms of cultural expression and in legal, intellectual, and political forums. Black and Jewish authors and thinkers struggled over issues from the nature of citizenship, liberalism, and community to the challenges of racism, anti-Semitism,…

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The best books on Black-Jewish relations

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Book cover of I Have Lived a Thousand Years: Growing Up in the Holocaust

I Have Lived a Thousand Years: Growing Up in the Holocaust

By Livia Bitton-Jackson

Why this book?

This is an extremely well-written first-person account of how anti-Semitism followed and haunted Livia (born Elli Friedmann in Czechoslovakia) before, during, and after she, her brother, and mother were shipped off to Auschwitz.  The atrocities and harassment they endured in the death camp didn’t stop after they were liberated in 1945 because so many anti-Semites made life unbearable, yet eventually Livia and her family triumphed.

From the list:

The best nonfiction books for middle schoolers about children in the Holocaust

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Book cover of Dear Mr. Dickens

Dear Mr. Dickens

By Nancy Churnin, Bethany Stancliffe

Why this book?

Some people might not think writing a letter is a tremendously brave act, but it is if you are a young woman who knows in her heart that she needs to challenge a very famous and beloved author – a man even she admires! I had never heard of Eliza Davies and her letters to Charles Dickens and was captivated by the story. Davies wrote to Dickens protesting his stereotypical and harmful depiction of Jewish people in Oliver Twist. And she made a difference! I love how the story teaches kids that they, too, can make a difference and…

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The best children’s books about brave and extraordinary women

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Book cover of Bauman: A Biography

Bauman: A Biography

By Izabela Wagner

Why this book?

I had never heard of Zygmunt Bauman when I picked up this book, but then I couldn’t put it down. By the time I had finished reading it, I was filled with the deepest appreciation and respect for both the man, and his biographer. Bauman’s life spanned almost a hundred years and his story is also the story of Europe, from 1925-2017.

Izabela Wagner has done monumental work to produce a biography worthy of its subject. Her loving respect for Bauman is tangible and adds greatly to the pleasure of reading the story of this extraordinary man’s life: Polish Jew,…

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The best books on understanding the human condition

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