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The Public Ineffectual

For entertainment purposes only.

Sunday, April 02, 2006

Dispatch from the Desk

I'm going to Korea next week for a week to visit my Grandma for her 88th Birthday. Been thinking about the particularities of how difference is created in such a "racially pure" and "homogenous" country. This passage reminds me of how difference is sustained:
In Wilhelmine Germany there were no formal disqualifications attached to being of the Jewish faith, much less to being Jewish origins. As early as 1812 Berlin Jews had achieved citizenship (such as it was in early Prussia), and some residual limitations on the related rights had been set aside in 1848. Yet, "after centuries of official discrimination against Jews, the juridical act of emancipation could not effectively bring about their equality of entitlements in social terms. Through what has been called the 'suppression of the constitution by means of administrative practices,' Jews were still largely excluded from state offices, judicial positions, academic chairs and military careers, and remained second-class citizens through to the end of the Wilhelmine era."

-- Gianfranco Poggi on the liability of Georg Simmel's Jewish heritage in spite of his family's Protestant conversion, his baptism and avowed secularism, , Money and the Modern Mind, 1993

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