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Sacred InterestsThe United States and the Islamic World, 1821-1921$
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Karine Walther

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9781469625393

Published to North Carolina Scholarship Online: May 2016

DOI: 10.5149/northcarolina/9781469625393.001.0001

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Jewish American Activism in the Ottoman Empire and Morocco, 1840–1878

Jewish American Activism in the Ottoman Empire and Morocco, 1840–1878

Chapter:
(p.99) 3 Jewish American Activism in the Ottoman Empire and Morocco, 1840–1878
Source:
Sacred Interests
Author(s):

Karine V. Walther

Publisher:
University of North Carolina Press
DOI:10.5149/northcarolina/9781469625393.003.0003

Chapter 3 analyzes American Jewish activism to help their persecuted brethren during the 1840 Damascus Affair where accusations of a blood libel against Syrian subjects led to an international call for intervention. The chapter also focuses on how the Damascus Affair helped prompt the rise of American Jewish organizations dedicated in part to helping their oppressed brethren abroad, including the Board of Delegates of American Israelites. The chapter than analyzes American cooperation with British and French Jewish organizations, including the British Board of Deputies of British Jews and the Alliance Israélite Universelle, to intervene during the Spanish-Moroccan War of 1859 and the Safi Affair in 1863. This chapter analyzes how Jewish Americans attempted to reframe discussions of American identity by emphasizing the United States as a model for religious toleration and secularism, while at the same time distancing themselves from identification with racist depictions of “Oriental” Muslims.

Keywords:   Damascus Affair, Safi Affair, Jewish Question, Board of Deputies of British Jews, Alliance Israélite Universelle, Board of Delegates of American Israelites, Morocco, Ottoman Empire, Anti-Semitism

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