They understand how to go with the flow to please women. Have you ever seen a Jewish man order food at a restaurant? These guys remember what it was like to grow up with their presumably Jewish moms. Proportionally fewer Jewish siblings hate each other than those of other religions (arguably).At the time, homosexuals were identified by their feminine traits—and who better fit that description than the Jewish man?“The most manly Jew is more feminine than the least manly Aryan,” wrote the Austrian philosopher Otto Weininger.’”This prescription didn’t apply in America, where Jewish-American immigrants faced a different problem: assimilation.For parents, it became imperative to find their children partners who would a) produce more Jews, and b) afford them a “pleasant, secure, respectable, class-appropriate domesticity,” says Daniel Boyarin’s brother Jonathan, a professor of modern Jewish culture at Cornell University.
The Yiddish word—which derives from edel, or noble—referred to “a quality of gentleness, almost softness,” says Boyarin.
The Yid has accepted submission and, therefore, the Hebrew ought to learn how to command…
the Hebrew should look the world straight in the eye and declare: ‘I am a Hebrew!
Yet this “ideal Jewish male femme” was also the pinnacle of manliness, a sexual force to be reckoned with. Other cultures twisted the feminized edelkayt into something negative.
An early anti-Semitic myth of medieval Europe was that Jewish men menstruated, perhaps as a result of their womanly excesses or dealings with the devil. In the 1890s, the Austrian-Jewish therapist put forth the idea of homosexuality as mental illness.