“Provocatively anti-Jewish rhetoric”

“Can you imagine a journalist for a liberal newspaper referring in neutral, even vaguely congratulatory terms to an artist’s “provocatively anti-gay rhetoric,” or “provocatively anti-black rhetoric,” or “provocatively anti-Arab rhetoric”?”

“Well, have a look at John Lewis’s profile of Gilad Atzmon for the Guardian, in which we read about the saxophonist’s “provocatively anti-Jewish rhetoric,” his “firebrand political outbursts,” his “furious attacks on Israel,” his “blunt anti-Zionism.” Sounds like laudable stuff, a challenge to the status quo, hooray!”

Read the rest by David Adler on Z Word.

4 Responses to ““Provocatively anti-Jewish rhetoric””

  1. zkharya Says:

    Well, Lewis has just made Atzmon’s antisemitism mainstream acceptable, airbrushing it over in artistic tones: “provocative anti-Jewish rhetoric”.

    “Provocative” i.e. what good art should be.

    “Anti-Jewish”, not in the sense of “anti-Jewish prejudice or discrimination”, but in the “good” sense of “challenging one’s own group”, “‘resisting’ following one’s own herd”. Certainly not in the sense of “antisemitic”.

    “Rhetoric” in the sense of “he doesn’t really mean it. It’s an artful means to an end, a metaphor or figure intended to challenge or provoke progressive thought”. Also in the sense of “artfully constructed”.

    Howard Jacobson was right.

  2. Another Observer Says:

    “That’s the advantage the artist has over the politician. The politician, like the scientist or the academic, looks at the world and tries to tell us things about ourselves. I am an artist. I look into myself and try to tell you things about the world. We push envelopes because we look into ourselves”.

    Hmmm. now who was it who claimed art above politics?……..

  3. Sabato Says:

    ““Can you imagine a journalist for a liberal newspaper referring in neutral, even vaguely congratulatory terms to an artist’s “provocatively anti-gay rhetoric,” or “provocatively anti-black rhetoric,” or “provocatively anti-Arab rhetoric”?””

    You probably won’t post this, but liberal papers have been making excuses for antisemitism for a while now.

    What will it take to get you to admit that the Guardian is an antisemitic paper?

    Why pretend to be shocked, shocked…?

  4. Susan Says:

    “…his “furious attacks on Israel,” his “blunt anti-Zionism.” Sounds like laudable stuff, a challenge to the status quo, hooray!””

    Anti-Zionism and furious attacks on Israel are the status quo in the UK. It doesn’t take any bravery at all to attack Israel. It is people like those here on Engage and the late Steve Cohen who displayed bravery and are going against the status quo.


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