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Anti-Jewish Legislation Research Guide

When the Nazis came into power in 1933, they immediately began passing laws and legislation that discriminated against Germany’s Jewish population. Jews were removed from government jobs, and laws were passed preventing them from engaging in social activities. Jewish businesses were boycotted, and members of the professions, such as doctors and lawyers, were prohibited from practicing.

In 1935, the Nuremberg Laws were passed. The first of these laws systematically detailed whether a person was a Jew based on their lineage, and revoked the citizenship of the Jewish population of Germany. The second barred Jews and non-Jews from marrying.

Anti-Jewish legislation continued in the following years. Jews were not allowed to work, and restrictions were placed on the time of day they could use public shops. A curfew was enforced. In 1938, all Jewish men were required to add the name Israel to their passports; Jewish women had to add the name Sarah. Jewish property was confiscated, and rations were reduced.

Recommended Resources


The Boniuk Library recommends the following resources for learning more about anti-Jewish legislation:

Alon Confino - A World without Jews: The Nazi Imagination from Persecution to Genocide 

Kevin Mahoney - In Pursuit of Justice: Examining the Evidence of the Holocaust 

John J. Michalczyk - Nazi Law: From Nuremberg to Nuremberg

Amy Newman - The Nuremberg Laws: Institutionalized Anti-Semitism

Bryan Mark Rigg - Hitler's Jewish Soldiers: The Untold Story of Nazi Racial Laws and Men of Jewish Descent in the German Military

Michael Stolleis - The Law under the Swastika: Studies on Legal History in Nazi Germany 

Touro College Jacob Fuchsberg Law Center - Hitler's courts betrayal of the rule of law in Nazi Germany (DVD)

James Q. Whitman - Hitler's American Model: The United States and the Making of Nazi Race Law

Search Terms

Jews -- Legal status, laws, etc. -- Germany -- History

Jews -- Persecutions -- Germany -- 20th century

Law -- Germany -- History

Minorities -- Legal status, laws, etc. -- Germany -- History

Race defilement (Nuremberg Laws of 1935)

Race discrimination -- Law and legislation

Online Resources

Anti-Defamation League: Nazi Germany and Anti-Jewish Policy

Jewish Virtual Library: The Nuremberg Laws: Background & Overview

National Archives: The Nuremberg Laws

Schaef's House: The Berlin Memorial Exercise

United States Holocaust Memorial Museum: Examples of Antisemitic Legislation, 1933-1939 

United States Holocaust Memorial Musem: Nuremberg Laws

United States Holocaust Memorial Museum: The Nuremberg Race Laws

Yad Vashem: Anti-Jewish Legislation