Antisemitism is a psychopathological personality disorder
Rudolph Löwenstein calls anti-Semitism a “social mental illness”, Erich Simmel speaks of a “mass psychosis which shows psychoanalytical research of character formation, that irrational ideas in harmony with irrational impulses for action serve the need of the individual to find again a pathological disorder and the mental balance. The collective character of a community, of its civilization, is also subject to psychopathological disturbances that produce anti-Semitism as an irrational mass phenomenon. Anti-Semitism is a psychopathological personality disorder, a relapse into an ontogenetic and phylogenetic stage of development. Hate governs the relationship to the environment. It generates antiSemitism along with other disease states. PA confirms that anti-Semitism is pathologically pathological. Through irrational ideas combined with irrational impulses for action, you try to overcome your pathological disorder and regain your mental balance. Freud says that in a civilization collective character formation is analogous to character development in the individual. There is a play between individual and collective character formation. AntiSemitism is an irrational, individual idea that serves the need of the individual through irrational impulses for action, a pathological disorder. The collective character of a community, its civilization, is also subject to psychopathological disturbances. This pathological similarity of individual and collective causes a strengthening and attachment, direction neurosis, mass psychosis and delusion. Projective identification in Klein: it is clear that individual parts of the self are split off and projected onto another person. There is an unconscious defense mechanism, the split-off part is returned possessively and pursued.
Freud’s projection: “[…] I transform what is in me to others. Although I don’t feel these feelings in me.” This projection can be found especially in paranoia or in normal forms of thinking such as faith. The anti-Semite does not see himself as ill, he will never seek therapy. The collectives stand for the individual in a kind of propaganda, a common concern as a connection in favor of the political rulers.
The conscience of the individual is switched off in the masses; the responsibilities are passed on to a leader or to the collective (see mass psychology). The personality is strengthened, but in reality it is not a healthy increase in self-confidence. Reality is experienced as an illusion. No individual is willing to take responsibility for what is happening. Advantages: those who themselves are plagued by feelings of inferiority will transform these into feelings of power in the collective. The prospect of an improved life situation lets the individual become a follower. In the hope of improving their social situation. Through community the stricken self of a person strengthens itself. To see anti-Semitism as pure mass neurosis is too little, a neurotic person can never form a group. Only a brief adaptation to the collective can take place. Neurotics can neither produce nor keep alive a mass phenomenon.
Why is anti-Semitism called an irrational mass phenomenon? To answer this question, it is necessary to examine the relationship between anti-Semitism and civilization. The majority of parliamentarians who have to fight anti-Semitism as a political force always consciously determine its significance for civilization than anti-Semitism. In 1890, Eugen Richter, one of the great German parliamentarians in the German Reichstag, said, “If we allow this movement to grow, we will destroy the pillars on which our culture rests. „The German Foreign Minister Rathenau, of Jewish descent, declared after the First World War. “Anti-Semitism is the vertical invasion of society by the barbarians”. Rathenau was murdered by the Nazis. The German example shows that anti-Semitism can reverse the process of civilization and throw the anti-Semitic personality back to the stage of primitive cannibalism. Psychoanalysis has shown that anti-Semitism destroys the achievements of civilization. The Process of Civilization produces anti-Semitism as a pathological symptomatology, which destroys the soil, on the ground that she’s up to. Anti-Semitism is a malignant ulcer on the body of civilization. If one examines the various accusations against the Jews, one can very much note to the displeasure of the anti-Semites, as far as Jewish characteristics are concerned, that the Jews prefer to use their mental rather than their physical powers, because their intellect is better developed than their physique. Jews dominate occupations in which intellectual ability is of vital importance. Anti-Semitism certainly cannot explain this positive thought. If we consult history, we learn that the personality traits just mentioned are not the cause, but the result of anti-Semitism. Jewish was made up of warriors, peasants and thinkers as well as other nationality groups, until it was deprived of the right to use its physical powers in the struggle for self-assertion. They enslaved it and forced the people to live without arable land. When it was claimed that the Jews did not love their fatherland, that they had all the money in the country, the occupation aimed at all top positions in the upper professions. The government positions decided that the Jews would not be admitted as university professors. Excluded from the army, they were not allowed to become officers. Legalized by the government, their businesses were boycotted. When the anti-Semitic affects were uncoupled from modern civilizational ideas, the merciless, complete physical annihilation of the Jews took place. The irrationality of anti-Semitism manifests itself in the accusation of Jews as criminals. An erotic love instinct of species conservation and a destructive devouring instinct of hatred with the goal of self-preservation: not only our ancestors were cannibals; we all enter life with the instinct to devour not only food, but all objects that cause us hardships. Aggressive destruction is the primitive precursor of psychic repression. The process of regression proceeds with the lifting of the barriers of repression. As a result of this suppression unconscious material can penetrate to the conscious self. In this way, the ego is subjected to the irrational inner world of the soul. The repression is regressively replaced by destructive aggression. As the state of the psychotic ego system worsens, the superego is gradually subject to the ES. This explains why the ego can no longer orient itself to reality and loses the ability to distinguish between the outer reality of the objects and the inner, irrational psychic reality. The images that populate the world of the psychotic can be adopted by the parents. In the conflict, the ego collapses because it could not resolve the ambivalence conflict with the parents. Adorno called propaganda an “organizing factor” of the National Socialist mass movement.
Propaganda analysis shows that it aims to capture people by playing on unconscious mechanisms. The fascist creates images in the minds of the listeners without reality, that is a kind of organized flight of thought. This propaganda contains twisted logic and fantastic distortions of reality. Their instrument is the stereotypical playing of films and radio broadcasts. This allows the listener to put their own neurotic or psychotic dispositions at the service of reality-oriented goals. The leader knows best how to sell his own psychic defects to the people. The people shaft and leaders are similarly structured. Same thoughts and feelings are there from the beginning. Propaganda brings satisfaction to the followers. As gratitude he accepts the thoughts of his leaders e.g: Why was Hitler popular? He offered people a show of cheap antics. The common people thank him for this and promise to follow him. The propaganda speech is misused as a new religious revelation. Propaganda patterns have been standardized for psychological reasons. A characteristic of the fascist ritual is the hidden hint of the revelation of the facts which is alluded to, but usually does not take place. A rational reason can easily be given for this as well. The law or at least the prevailing conventions exclude open or pronarzist or anti-Semitic expressions. A speaker who wants to convey such ideas must rather resort to indirect methods. In this way, the listener is given the say and every explanation is put in tune with him or her. The harmony between leader and listener is established, as already mentioned, with the help of hidden hints. The staging of the ritual is white.
Secondary anti-Semitism Secondary anti-Semitism is understood as a change of form in which the function of defense against debt is replaced by the function of debt relief. This leads to the formation of intergenerational accomplices. In the later generations there is an acquired narcissistic touch taboo towards the NZ past. This is reflected in the transmission of unconscious affect-defense formations. The confrontation with guilt is passed on to the next generation. This young generation is identified with the suppressed feelings of guilt of the parent generation. But the recognition of guilt calls for relief strategies. These are manifold. The young generation has to take over the task of debt processing, it means repression and they look for new strategies of debt relief. This is called the game of secondary anti-Semitism, for example:
Forms of play
– General Critique of the State of Israel in the Form of NS Comparisons (Anti-Zionism)
– Relation of the Holocaust by comparison with other genocides
– Assumption that Jews would exploit the role of Holocaust victims to gain political and economic advantages
– Terrorist attacks of 11 September 2001 in the USA
– Final demand
– Search for other “worse” anti-Semites (e.g. Arabs)
The growing anti-Muslim racism is a form of secondary anti-Semitism, i.e. the perpetrators are even worse than we are. One lives the position of moral superiority. One avoids the confrontation with one’s own anti-Semitic tendencies. Anti-Semitism is declared to be an essential feature of Islam; a gigantic threat scenario is built up. Muslim immigrants represent a growing danger, which must be countered by exhausting all democratic means. The antiSemitism emanating from the Muslims is based on the communities. The secondary antiSemitic tendency is to a greater extent a reflection of our social reality, of migration. Modern communication technologies make it possible to maintain traditional attitudes over long distances, for example: Anti-Semitic television programs convey Allgaier anti-Semitic messages in the form of news or series. In a survey of young people from different social and geographical backgrounds the following has been found: due to the media there is a strong propaganda dynamic for anti-Semitism this bundles and unites the different people. The second part of the survey concerns teachers at school: there are two groups here. Group 1 with a strong tendency to trivialize. They dispute the anti-Semitic at the school. Group 2 exaggerates this problem. Anti-Semitism is a pure problem of Muslim pupils, it does not occur with German pupils. The Muslim pupils are perceived as a foreign group. They live in their parallel world to the Germans. They do not want to integrate at home either. Incited by the media and the public, they take up unfiltered anti-Semite ideas and collectively continue against them. Thinking and acting ends in irrational and neurotic warnings. This produces anti-Semitic hatred.
Today, the form of debt defense has changed into the form of debt relief, i.e. the grandchildren of the war generation have acknowledged the guilt of their ancestors and demand relief for it, so that secondary anti-Semitism continues to exist.
Freud, S. Freud, The Discomfort in Culture (1930), in: Frankfurt 1963, .456 – 481.
Antisemitism 1st, Ernst Simmel, 2nd Theodor W. Adorno, 1993 Verlag Frankfurt am Main (and fascist propaganda 2006).
Antisemitism 1st, Ernst Simmel, 2nd Theodor W. Adorno, 1993 Verlag Frankfurt am Main (and fascist propaganda 2006).
M. Brunner, National Community, Perpetration and Anti-Semitism (2011)
Adorno, Theodor W. (1997): Zur Bekämpfung des Antisemitismus.In:Ders.: Collected Writings:20.1.Frankfurt am Main (Suhrkamp), S. 360-383