"I've noticed that quite a lot of people who are prominent in the animal liberation movement are Jews. Maybe we are simply not prepared to see the powerful hurting the weak." --Peter Singer (Author, Animal Liberation)


'Jewish Punks Embrace Nazi Rhetoric and Imagery' in New Vilna Review

In 2005, I wrote an article for New Voices that gave an overview of Jewish punk. When I finished writing that article, I realized that I was just scratching at the surface. I kept digging (and later went to California to cover a Jewish punk tour for the Forward). What I found was a peculiar but compelling trend of Holocaust rhetoric and imagery among Jewish punks. My article about this has just been published in New Vilna Review.

In the article at least, I try not to take a side about whether the playfulness about the Holocaust crosses the line. The article attempts to present different perspectives about the meaning and rationale behind such Holocaust rhetoric and imagery. It uses examples from punk's early years (e.g., Malcolm McLaren, The Ramones) and the modern era (e.g., Jewdriver, Johnny Cohen and the New Age Nazis). This is controversial stuff, but it's worth considering nevertheless. The article is framed by its epigraph:

“Just where are the limits of taste and irony here? And what should they be? Must a depraved crime always lead to such depraved artistic responses? Can such art mirror evil and remain free of evil’s stench?”
—James E. Young, “Looking Back Into the Mirrors of Evil”


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