Anti-Semitism and Google’s Sergey Brin

There is a lengthy and interesting new profile out of Google founder Sergey Brin. Published in a Jewish politics & culture magazine, you learn about how Brin thinks anti-semitism has popped up in his Wikipedia profile, and about how his “standard” Russian-Jewish family influenced his success.

From the article, here he is on the latter subject in a recent speech at a Tel Aviv university:

“I have standard Russian-Jewish parents,” he then continued in English. “My dad is a math professor. They have a certain attitude about studies. And I think I can relate that here, because I was told that your school recently got seven out of the top 10 places in a math competition throughout all Israel.”

The students applauded their achievement and the recognition from Sergey, unaware that he was setting up a joke.”What I have to say,” he continued, “is in the words of my father: ‘What about the other three?'”

[Moment Magazine via Search Engine Land]


  1. wikipedia sceptic says:

    I also am beginning to believe that wikepedia has anti semitism leanings.
    Please go here and read wikepedia’s entry about Irene Nemirovsky
    Am I the only one who finds it odd/antisemitic that wikipedia would state that “…she was the daughter of a rich Jewish Banker…”.
    Do the children of the Rockerfellers, JP Morgan, the Hunt family, etc. have similar entries stating they are the children of very rich Christian fathers.

  2. “Does any company founded by two Jews, no matter how assimilated, necessarily retain some defining Jewish characteristics?” Wow, if that was written anywhere but in a Jewish magazine, the writer would be accused of anti-semitism, especially since the writer goes on to list all the ways. That epithet gets tossed around far too easily, take for example the weak Wikipedia evidence cited in the article or by the commenter above (btw, Wikipedia is written by thousands of people so to say “it” has a bias borders on nonsense). Also, It’s funny to see how his parents still want him to get a PhD, even though he’s currently working on interesting things and is already a billionaire. It’s funny to see that desire among a certain class of graduate school-educated parents, the equivalent of what a lower middle-class parent’s desire decades ago might have been, that their son become a banker or some other job where they wear a fancy suit and tie to work every day.

  3. Maybe the entry has been cleaned up but I can only find this mention:
    “Born in Moscow, Russia to a Jewish family…”
    Only in an already anti-semitic climate would the mere mention of Jewish heritage be anti-semitic.
    Wikipedia’s biases are those of its contributors and editors. Probably that climate exists at times given Wikipedia’s open nature.

  4. The most delightful irony in the piece is that Sergey’s father worked as an economist for central planning in Moscow.
    More and more delightfully ironic the more I think about it. :)

  5. I didnt even know that sergey and larry are jewish . . . . I guess for an asian immigrant like me, all white guys are the same :)
    seriously though, it always seemed wierd to me that in America, as long as someone is not an anglo saxon, his or her ethnicity (+ job) becomes their defining identity.

  6. i think you’ll find every country defines the identity’s of ‘outsiders’ by their ethnicity. My years in Japan, Malaysia, Qatar, and Hong Kong (as a white guy) bring me to that conclusion. America has no monopoly on this.

  7. Franklin Stubbs says:

    One wonders to what degree racial tension is a function of politically correct obsession with racial tension.