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Jewish DogsAn Image and Its Interpreters$
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Kenneth Stow

Print publication date: 2006

Print ISBN-13: 9780804752817

Published to Stanford Scholarship Online: June 2013

DOI: 10.11126/stanford/9780804752817.001.0001

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A Usable Past

A Usable Past

Chapter:
(p.119) Five A Usable Past
Source:
Jewish Dogs
Publisher:
Stanford University Press
DOI:10.11126/stanford/9780804752817.003.0006

To advance the glory of martyrs, the early Bollandists perpetuated the medieval vision that Jews were a constant threat. In particular, they perpetuated the idea that martyrdom often went hand in hand with Jewish machinations. Furthermore, martyrdom at Jewish hands had unique, even beneficial, qualities. Paradoxically, the creators of the seventeenth-century Bollandist legacy declared the truth of ritual murder while employing the scholarly tools of reasoned analysis to refute the libel of ritual murder. Conflict arose between proponents of anti-modernism and modernism over ritual murder. In pursuing the truth about sainthood, modernists used an approach which was different from that of their scholarly predecessors.

Keywords:   Bollandists, ritual murder, martyrs, Jews, martyrdom, libel, anti-modernism, modernism, sainthood

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