The Jews, Instructions for Use: Four Eighteenth-Century Projects for the Emancipation of European Jews

The Jews, Instructions for Use: Four Eighteenth-Century Projects for the Emancipation of European Jews

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Paolo Bernardini & Diego Lucci

ISBN: 9781936235742 (hardcover)
Pages: 216 pp.
Publication Date: January 2012

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This book examines the four most important projects for Jewish emancipation in eighteenth-century Europe. The essays presented analyze the proposal advanced by the freethinker John Toland in 1714 and three projects of the 1780s, formulated by the state official Christian Wilhelm von Dohm in Frederick the Great’s Prussia, the economist Count D’Arco in Mantua under Habsburg rule, and the Abbe Henri Gregoire in France on the eve of the Revolution. Focusing on the combination of humanitarian and utilitarian arguments and objectives in the proposals to redefine the legal and social status of the Jews, this book is a particularly useful resource for scholars and students interested in the history of Jewish-Gentile relations and the Age of Enlightenment.


Paolo Bernardini is professor of Modern European History at the University of Insubria in Como, Italy. He is the author or editor of 35 books in Italian and English, including Le rive fatali di Keos. Il suicidio nella storia intellettuale europea da Montaigne a Kant (2009), Fragments From a Land of Freedom: Essays in American Culture and Civilization Around the Year 2000 (2010), and Di qua e di la del mare. Venezia e il mondo universo (2010).

Diego Lucci is associate professor of History and Philosophy at the American University in Bulgaria. His research focuses on the English Enlightenment, the history of Jewish-Gentile relations, and cultural intermediaries and travelers in the long eighteenth century. He is the author of the volume Scripture and Deism: The Biblical Criticism of the Eighteenth-Century British Deists (2008), and has published numerous articles.