I was first approached nearly a year ago by researcher Mark Farrell, with a request for help in translating Hellmut Schramm’s book, Der jüdische Ritualmord : Eine historische Untersuchung [Jewish Ritual-Murder : a Historical Investigation]. I agreed to translate one chapter into English, with the possibility of my making a deeper commitment should I deem the book worth such an investment of my time and energy. To my great surprise, I not only found Schramm’s work to be worth translating, but I became determined to perform the entire translation myself and see it made available in English.
Perhaps this is the place for me to state my own educational/political background and my approach to this topic. I have a bachelor’s degree in Mathematics, but I also took a heavy course concentration in European History, particularly of the period prior to 1600, and I have fluency in reading German. In high school — this was before the long slow slide of the educational system into its present lobotomised condition — I took four years of Latin and have periodically refreshed my Latin skills. Aside from formal course work, I’ve maintained a life-long interest in History and consider myself well-read (for a lay person) in the subject. I do not hold any advanced degrees; nor can I point to a long list of credentials which might imbue my writing with the aura or status which attends the opinions of ‘experts.’ Therefore, as you read my comments — and as you read Schramm — it is your own intelligence, common sense, and life experience which must be the final arbiter of the validity or invalidity of the phenomenon of Jewish ritual-murder (JRM).