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Negroes Are Anti-Semitic Because They're Anti-White Excerpt on Jewish Suffering

…One does not wish, in short, to be told by an American Jew that his suffering is as great as the American Negro’s suffering. It isn’t and one knows that it isn’t from the very tone in which he assures you that it is…

The Jew’s suffering is recognized as part of the moral history of the world and the Jew is recognized as a contributor to the world’s history: this is not true for the blacks. Jewish history, whether or not one can say it is honored, is certainly known: the black history has been blasted, maligned and despised. The Jew is a white man, and when white men rise up against oppression, they are heroes: when black men rise, they have reverted to their native savagery. The uprising in the Warsaw ghetto was not described as a riot, nor were the participants maligned as hoodlums: the boys and girls in Watts and Harlem are thoroughly aware of this, and it certainly contributes to their attitude toward the Jews…


James Baldwin, “Negroes Are Anti-Semitic Because They’re Anti-White,” New York Times Magazine, April 9, 1967.


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In 1967, James Baldwin, a novelist, poet, and civil rights activist, wrote an article trying to explain why after all that Jews had done for the Civil Rights Movement some African Americans could be anti-Semitic.

Date / time: 
April 9, 1967
Author(s): 
Baldwin, James
Publisher: 
New York Times Company
Publication: 
The New York Times Magazine
Date published: 
April 9, 1967

How to cite this page

Jewish Women's Archive. "Negroes Are Anti-Semitic Because They're Anti-White Excerpt on Jewish Suffering." (Viewed on April 23, 2014) <http://jwa.org/media/negroes-are-anti-semitic-because-theyre-anti-white-excerpt-on-jewish-suffering>.