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Musée d'art et d'histoire du Judaïsme

Retour A Selection of Works Painting - Sculpture

Theodor Herzl (Budapest, 1860 - Edlach, 1904)
Theodor Herzl (Budapest, 1860 - Edlach, 1904)

Boris Schatz (Varna, 1867 - Denver, 1932)
40 x 28 cm

Photo Gilles Berizzi. Réunion des Musées Nationaux, Paris
Gift of Theo Klein

In Western Europe, emancipation had permitted the integration of the Jewish intellectual elites. Among them was Theodor Herzl, a law graduate, journalist and playwright. Herzl witnessed the election of the anti-Semitic mayor of Vienna, Karl Lueger, and Captain Dreyfus' public stripping of office, amid cries of "Death to the Jews!" His Zionist work was a reaction against anti-Semitism. In 1896, he wrote Der Judenstaat, (The Jewish State) and organised the first World Zionist Congress, the following year, in Basle, Switzerland.

Convinced that only the establishment of a Jewish state, guaranteed by public law and international agreements, could save the Jews of Europe, Herzl, who did not specify the actual location of this Jewish state, placed the emphasis on the political and diplomatic aspect of its establishment. He founded the World Zionist Organisation, which produced a clash of different tendencies, and devoted his last years to defending the aim of a national Jewish homeland.

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