Jewish Identities in the New Europe. Webber, Jonathan (9781874774150). Paperback.

Jewish Identities in the New Europe. Webber, Jonathan (9781874774150). Paperback.

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How do the Jews of Post-Holocaust, post-communist Europe—east and west—regard themselves? Do they perceive themselves as a religious minority, an ethnic group, or simply as ordinary members of the wider European cultures in which they live? How do they regard the wider non-Jewish community, and how do they relate to the Jews of other European countries? To what extent is Israel a factor in forging these relationships? The contributors to this book are authorities in their respective subjects, and all have significant international reputations. Together they cover a wide range of topics from different perspectives. Among the problems considered are: what the future holds for the Jews of Europe; what it means to be Jewish in the countries of eastern Europe (Russia, Poland, and Hungary are considered in detail by local experts); hopes and uncertainties in religious trends; and the likely development of interfaith relations, as seen by both Jews and Christians. A well-argued introduction identifies the points of convergence, the contradictions, and the myths implicit in the different analyses and teases out the main conclusions and implications. Authoritative and accessible, this book is essential reading for anyone who wishes to know about the contemporary concerns of the Jews of Europe. Published for the Oxford Centre for Hebrew and Jewish Studies. CONTRIBUTORS: Geoffrey Alderman, Max Beloff, Margaret Brearley, Julius Carlebach, Mikhail A. Chlenov, Sergio DellaPergola, Evyatar Friesel, Pier Francesco Fumagalli, Konstanty Gebert, Daniel Gutwein, András Kovács, Igor Krupnik, Norman Lamm, Jonathan Magonet, Elisabeth Maxwell, Stephen H. Miller, Jonathan Sacks, Dominique Schnapper, Eliezer Schweid, David Singer, Norman Solomon, Shmuel Trigano, Jonathan Webber, Robert S. Wistrich.

‘Webber’s introductory essay and his chapter on Jewish identity are particularly effective in highlighting the impact of a European environment on its Jews. Indeed, the reader encounters comparisons throughout the book that span countries and history, or is led to such comparisons by the different foci of the various articles. . . . Webber’ volume has the potential to stimulate further empirical research in Europe, as well as shedding light on the situation there for non-Europeans who tend to overlook that continent. Those who care about the future of the Jews and Judaism, whether it be in Europe or elsewhere, will find this a very welcome addition to the literature.’
Ephraim Tabory, Contemporary Jewry

‘A rich book, containing many interesting insights and observations . . . excellent introductory survey by Jonathan Webber.’
André W. M. Gerrits, Ethnic & Racial Studies

‘The twenty-four contributors to this excellent collection of essays are distinguished academic and spiritual leaders of present-day Jewry, mainly in Europe, who have devoted much thought to the problems confronting our people in the modern Western world. . . . The topics covered are varied and important.’
Miriam Kraus, Jerusalem Post

‘Timely . . . an impressive assortment of views, wide-ranging in their scope, analysing demographic, sociological and religious trends, surveying particular communities in Eastern and Western Europe, looking at inter-faith relations, and the role of Israel and the Holocaust in defining contemporary Jewish identity . . . interesting, informative and challenging.’
Valerie Monchi, Jewish Chronicle

‘Some of the essays in this volume seem already to have been overtaken by events, while other remain strikingly prescient. Taken as a whole, however, this book is a useful contribution to the contemporary debate over the nature of the new Europe, while offering valuable insights for the study of modern Jewish history.’
John D. Klier, Journal of European Studies

‘The strength of the compilation lies in the wide variety of viewpoints that originate not simply from Europe but also from Israel and the United States . . . the breadth of coverage in the 290 pages is remarkable . . . Readers interested in a particular approach or topic should scan the contents carefully and use them in conjunction with the concise biographical notes to pinpoint articles to meet their needs. They will be helped in this by Jonathan Webber’s comprehensive analytical introductory essay which also points straightforwardly to what is missing from the discussion.’
Marlena Schmool, Le'ela

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