Scrapbookpages Blog

June 19, 2011

Was Richard Wagner an anti-Semite?

Filed under: Dachau, Germany — Tags: , , , — furtherglory @ 10:24 am

I got into a discussion recently with a young student who is a music major.  It started with Stravinsky and ended with Richard Wagner.  After the student told me that one of his college professors said that Wagner was anti-Semitic, I decided to end the conversation because this is not something that should be discussed in polite society.

If I could go back in time and continue this discussion, I would say to the student:  “Define anti-Semitic.”  In Wagner’s day, the term anti-Semite had a different meaning than it has today.  Back then, an anti-Semite was a person who wanted the Jews to assimilate into German society, rather than have their own “state-within-a-state.”  It was all tied up with the “Jewish Question.”   (more…)