As German Jews struggled for legal emancipation, they also embarked on a program of cultural renewal, distancing themselves from their fellow Ashkenazim in Poland and giving a special place to the Sephardim of medieval Spain. In an elegantly written new book, John M. Efron (UC Berkeley) explains how German Jews idealized the Sephardim as worldly, morally and intellectually superior, and beautiful, products of the tolerant Muslim environment in which they lived.
Pre-war Jewish life in Hungary from the late 19th through the early 20th centuries was astonishingly diverse in language, religious practice, and lifestyle. Join us for a fascinating evening as scholars of social history delve deeply into the thriving daily lives of these Hungarian, Yiddish, and German-speaking Jews along with author Andras Koerner.
The first volume of its kind, “Dislocated Memories: Jews, Music, and Postwar German Culture” draws together three significant areas of inquiry: Jewish music, German culture, and the legacy of the Holocaust. The volume makes powerful arguments about the impact of the Holocaust and its aftermath in changing contexts of musical performance and composition.
German-born industrialist Stef Wertheimer discusses his exceptional new biography, “The Habit of Labor” (Overlook Press, 2015) with Jane Eisner, Editor-in-Chief of the Forward.
Reconstructing the fate of more than 8,000 companies, this book offers the first comprehensive analysis of Jewish economic activity and its obliteration in Berlin.
In the decades following Israel’s establishment, subtle variations appeared in the attitudes of key Jewish members of the Frankfurt School toward the Jewish state. In his new book, The Frankfurt School, Jewish Lives and Antisemitism (Cambridge University Press), Jack Jacobs (John Jay College; Graduate Center, CUNY) offers new insights into why.
Peter Appelbaum will speak about his book, Loyal Sons, which describes, for the first time in English, the experiences of Jews in the German army during the First World War.
The 21st century has seen a resurgence of interest in the works of Stefan Zweig, who was amongst the most acclaimed authors worldwide before he fell into obscurity. Mark Gelber (Ben Gurion University) and Birger Vanwesenbeck (SUNY) present two new books that reassess Zweig’s legacy.
Luise Hirsch uses biography and social history to show how Russian- and German-Jewish women fought their way into the universities of Switzerland and Germany and became the first women professionals in modern history.