Martin Luther and Anti-Semitism

by pkaufman ~ January 26th, 2010. Filed under: Chapter 13: Reformation, Religious Wars, and National Conflicts.

Luther was a man who greatly impacted history but his anti-Semitic tendencies are often overlooked. The textbook has a short paragraph about his writings attacking the Jews in his “harshly worded pamphlets”, one of which is titled The Jews and Their Lies, but it’s not very forceful when drawing conclusions about what this could indicate. It simply states that some people believe him to be ant-Semitic and others don’t. As if a title like that could lead you to believe anything else.

There was a movie made in 2003 called Luther which is about, surprise surprise, Martin Luther. It’s a good example of how he’s generally portrayed as a hero. The movie only focuses on Luther’s positive impact, and says nothing of his writings against the Jews. Because he significantly influenced countless people his opinions on all topics were most likely adopted by many others, which may have greatly contributed to later anti-Semitism. This is the trailer for the movie;  just so you don’t get too excited though, there’s a picture of how he really looked right under it:

Luther Trailer youtube


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