"Thoughtful, provocative, and lucidly written, this is a remarkably successful attempt to reconstruct the history of the Jews of Europe in a comparative perspective."—Carlo Ginzburg, author of The Cheese and the Worms
From the award-winning historian of the Holocaust, Europe Against the Jews, 1880-1945 is the first book to move beyond Germany’s singular crime to the collaboration of Europe as a whole. The Holocaust was perpetrated by the Germans, but it would not have been possible without the assistance of thousands of helpers in other countries: state officials, police, and civilians who eagerly supported the genocide. If we are to fully understand how and why the Holocaust happened, Götz Aly argues in this groundbreaking study, we must examine its prehistory throughout Europe. We must look at countries as far-flung as Romania and France, Russia and Greece, where, decades before the Nazis came to power, a deadly combination of envy, competition, nationalism, and social upheaval fueled a surge of anti-Semitism, creating the preconditions for the deportations and murder to come. In the late nineteenth century, new opportunities for education and social advancement were opening up, and Jewish minorities took particular advantage of them, leading to widespread resentment. At the same time, newly created nation-states, especially in the east, were striving for ethnic homogeneity and national renewal, goals which they saw as inextricably linked. Drawing upon a wide range of previously unpublished sources, Aly traces the sequence of events that made persecution of Jews an increasingly acceptable European practice. Ultimately, the German architects of genocide found support for the Final Solution in nearly all the countries they occupied or were allied with. Without diminishing the guilt of German perpetrators, Aly documents the involvement of all of Europe in the destruction of the Jews, once again deepening our understanding of this most tormented history.
" --Bulletin of the Arnold and Leora Finkler Institute of the Holocaust ResearchA world-famous scholar analyzes the historiography of the Nazi period, including conflicting interpretations of the Holocaust and the impact of German reunification.
The significance of the Ghetto -- Venice, the Jews, and Europe, 1516-2016: 1. Before the Ghetto -- 2. Cosmopolitan Venice -- 3. The cosmopolitan Ghetto -- 4. The synagogues -- 5. Jewish culture and women -- 6. Trade in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries -- 7. Tales of the Ghetto : the shadow of Shylock -- 8. Napoleon : the opening of the gates and assimilation -- 9. The twentieth century
Winner of the National Jewish Book Award (Holocaust Category) Winner of the Canadian Historical Association John A. Macdonald Prize Featured in The Literary Review of Canada 100: Canada’s Most Important Books [This] is a story best summed up in the words of an anonymous senior Canadian official who, in the midst of a rambling, off-the-record discussion with journalists in 1945, was asked how many Jews would be allowed into Canada after the war … ‘None,’ he said, ‘is too many.’ From the Preface One of the most significant studies of Canadian history ever written, None Is Too Many conclusively lays to rest the comfortable notion that Canada has always been an accepting and welcoming society. Detailing the country’s refusal to offer aid, let alone sanctuary, to Jews fleeing Nazi persecution between 1933 and 1948, it is an immensely bleak and discomfiting story – and one that was largely unknown before the book’s publication. Irving Abella and Harold Troper’s retelling of this episode is a harrowing read not easily forgotten: its power is such that, ‘a manuscript copy helped convince Ron Atkey, Minister of Employment and Immigration in Joe Clark’s government, to grant 50,000 “boat people” asylum in Canada in 1979, during the Southeast Asian refugee crisis’ (Robin Roger, The Literary Review of Canada). None Is Too Many will undoubtedly continue to serve as a potent reminder of the fragility of tolerance, even in a country where it is held as one of our highest values.
" --Journal of Polish Jewish StudiesAn illuminating study of the demographic, cultural, and socioeconomic condition of East Central European Jewry, the book focuses on the internal life of Jewish communities in the region and on the relationships between Jews and gentiles in a nationalist environment.
Jews and Judaism played a significant role in the history of the expansion of Europe to the west as well as in the history of the economic, social, and religious development of the New World. They played an important role in the discovery, colonization, and eventually exploitation of the resources of the New World. Alone among the European peoples who came to the Americas in the colonial period, Jews were dispersed throughout the hemisphere; indeed, they were the only cohesive European ethnic or religious group that lived under both Catholic and Protestant regimes, which makes their study particularly fruitful from a comparative perspective. As distinguished from other religious or ethnic minorities, the Jewish struggle was not only against an overpowering and fierce nature but also against the political regimes that ruled over the various colonies of the Americas and often looked unfavorably upon the establishment and tleration of Jewish communities in their own territory. Jews managed to survive and occasionally to flourish against all odds, and their history in the Americas is one of the more fascinating chapters in the early modern history of European expansion.
During the first century A.D., the Hebrew people spread into nearly every corner of Europe with a culture just as influential on history as the Greek and Roman. This authoritative work introduces to a wide audience a reality, a heredity, and a history too often misunderstood, distorted, or unknown. Full-color illustrations throughout.
The origins and life of East European Jewry took on new historical and political importance after the Holocaust. In Poland alone 99 per cent of Polish Jews three million in all were killed; Yiddish as a spoken language more or less disappeared. This volume presents a history of East European Jewry from its beginnings to the period after the Holocaust. It gives an overview of the demographic, political, socioeconomic, religious and cultural conditions of Jewish communities in Poland, Russia, Bohemia and Moravia. Interesting themes include the story of early settlers, the 'Golden Age', the influence of the Kabbalah and Hasidism. Vivid portraits of Jewish family life and religious customs make the book enjoyable to read.
On the Eve is the portrait of a world on the brink of annihilation. In this provocative book, Bernard Wasserstein presents a new and disturbing interpretation of the collapse of European Jewish civilization even before the Nazi onslaught. In the 1930s, as Europe spiraled toward the Second World War, the continent’s Jews faced an existential crisis. The harsh realities of the age—anti-Semitic persecution, economic discrimination, and an ominous climate of violence—devastated Jewish communities and shattered the lives of individuals. The Jewish crisis was as much the result of internal decay as of external attack. Demographic collapse, social disintegration, and cultural dissolution were all taking their toll. The problem was not just Nazism: In the summer of 1939 more Jews were behind barbed wire outside the Third Reich than within it, and not only in police states but even in the liberal democracies of the West. The greater part of Europe was being transformed into a giant concentration camp for Jews. Unlike most previous accounts, On the Eve focuses not on the anti-Semites but on the Jews. Wasserstein refutes the common misconception that they were unaware of the gathering forces of their enemies. He demonstrates that there was a growing and widespread recognition among Jews that they stood on the edge of an abyss. On the Eve recaptures the agonizing sorrows and the effervescent cultural glories of this last phase in the history of the European Jews. It explores their hopes, anxieties, and ambitions, their family ties, social relations, and intellectual creativity—everything that made life meaningful and bearable for them. Wasserstein introduces a diverse array of characters: holy men and hucksters, beggars and bankers, politicians and poets, housewives and harlots, and, in an especially poignant chapter, children without a future. The geographical range also is vast: from Vilna (the “Jerusalem of the North”) to Amsterdam, Vienna, Warsaw, and Paris, from the Judeo-Espagnol-speaking stevedores of Salonica to the Yiddish-language collective farms of Soviet Ukraine and Crimea. Wasserstein’s aim is to “breathe life into dry bones.” Based on comprehensive research, rendered with compassion and empathy, and brought alive by telling anecdotes and dry wit, On the Eve offers a vivid and enlightening picture of the European Jews in their final hour.
This edited collection seeks to present a valuable guide to the Jewish contribution to the European integration process, and to enable readers to obtain a better understanding of the unknown Jewish involvement in the European integration project. Adopting both a national and a pan-European approaches, this volume brings together the work of leading international researchers and senior practitioners to cover a wide range of topics with an interdisciplinary approach under three different parts: present challenges, Jews and pan-European identity, and unsung heroes.
First published in 1938, Jacob Rader Marcus's The Jews in The Medieval World has remained an indispensable resource for its comprehensive view of Jewish historical experience from late antiquity through the early modern period, viewed through primary source documents in English translation. In this new work based on Marcus's classic source book, Marc Saperstein has recast the volume's focus, now fully centered on Christian Europe, updated the work's organizational format, and added seventy-two new annotated sources. In his compelling introduction, Saperstein supplies a modern and thought-provoking discussion of the changing values that influence our understanding of history, analyzing issues surrounding periodization, organization, and inclusion. Through a vast range of documents written by Jews and Christians, including historical narratives, legal opinions, martyrologies, memoirs, polemics, epitaphs, advertisements, folktales, ethical and pedagogical writings, book prefaces and colophons, commentaries, and communal statutes, The Jews in Christian Europe allows the actors and witnesses of events to speak for themselves.
Europe is expanding - and therewith remembers its historical basis, which was hidden beneath the shadow of the Cold War for a long time. This return of a common history which is mostly narrated as a history of success today, however contains the perception of transnational traditions at the same time which by contrast should give reason for a critical self-reflection. This volume gives an impulse through a comparative examination of the still highly actual forms of antisemitism in Europe. The focus will be on the developments in the countries from the Baltic States to South Eastern Europe, which usually are little known in Western Europe. At the same time, the specifities of antisemitism in Eastern Europe are incorporated in the theoretical insights of antisemitism research, thus filling a gap that has existed until now.
Examines the history of persecution against European Jews, discusses the definition of a Jew according to the German regime, and describes the processes through which Jews were eliminated during the Holocaust years."
Covering the story of prejudice against Jews from the time of Christ through the rise of Nazi Germany, The History of Anti-Semitism presents in elegant and thoughtful language a balanced, careful assessment of this egregious human failing that is nearly ubiquitous in the history of Europe. Suicidal Europe, 1870-1933 traces the development of a belief among Europe's educated classes in an eventual Jewish domination of the West. Revealing the embedded myths about Jewish bankers and Jewish Bolsheviks in European rhetoric and histories, Poliakov demonstrates that the steady rise in anti-Semitism and suspicion of Jews in the late nineteenth century--highlighted by the Dreyfus affair--and its eventual eruption in the rise of the Nazi party in Germany in the 1920s are part of the same thread of fear and hatred that reaches back to the beginning of the first millennium.
A Travel Guide and Resource Book to Prague, Warsaw, Crakow, and Budapest
Author: Eli Valley
Publisher: Jason Aronson
The Great Jewish Cities of Central and Eastern Europe: A Travel Guide and Resource Book to Prague, Warsaw, Cracow, and Budapest is the most comprehensive guidebook covering all aspects of Jewish history and contemporary life in Prague, Warsaw, Cracow, and Budapest. This remarkable book includes detailed histories of the Jews in these cities, walking tours of Jewish districts past and present, intensive descriptions of Jewish sites, fascinating accounts of local Jewish legend and lore, and practical information for Jewish travelers to the region. The Great Jewish Cities of Central and Eastern Europe is much more than a tour guide. It is a rich storybook filled with illuminating gleanings from all aspects of Jewish culture in the region: inspiring legends from the streets of Jewish Cracow; a secret glimpse at the former facade of a Prague synagogue; strolls atop a buried Medieval synagogue in Budapest; a virtual reality tour of Warsaw's former Jewish quarter. The author combines experience in several disciplines to elucidate all aspects of Jewish history in these cities, from architectural history to religious symbolism. The entire history of Jewish life, including local traditions and contemporary anecdotes is covered. In addition, The Great Jewish Cities of Central and Eastern Europe is also a practical sourcebook essential for the Jewish traveler, containing information ranging from kosher restaurants to the prayer times and service descriptions of active synagogues in the region. Whether it's an ancient legend or a description of a kosher restaurant, Eli Valley describes the topic in a style that is both enthusiastic and easy to read. The author's years of experience in the region give him an insight into the local Jewish communities rarely seen by the outside world. In spite of the renewed accessibility of Jewish sites, local tour guides are not well-versed in the history of Jewish compatriots, and guide books include only sparse, misleading information about the Jewish sites. The unfortu