New Perspectives on the Haskalah

Edited by Shmuel Feiner and David Sorkin

£19.95
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ISBN: 9781904113263

Publication: November 1, 2004

Series: The Littman Library of Jewish Civilization

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This volume, written by a range of scholars in history and literature, offers a new understanding of one of the central cultural and ideological movements among Jews in modern times. Disengaging the Haskalah from the questions of modernization or emancipation that have hitherto dominated the scholarship, the contributors put the Haskalah under a microscope in order to restore detail and texture to the individuals, ideas, and activities that were its makers in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. In particular, they replace simple dichotomies with nuanced distinctions, presenting the relationship between 'tradition' and Haskalah as a spectrum of closely linked cultural options rather than a fateful choice between old and new or good and evil. The essays address major and minor figures; ask whether there was such an entity as an 'early Haskalah', or a Haskalah movement in England, look at key issues such as the relationship of the Haskalah to Orthodoxy and hasidism, and also treat such neglected subjects as the position of women. New Perspectives on the Haskalah will interest all students of modern Jewish history, literature, and culture. CONTRIBUTORS Harris Bor, Edward Breuer, Tova Cohen, Immanuel Etkes, Shmuel Feiner, Yehuda Friedlander, David B. Ruderman, Joseph Salmon, Nancy Sinkoff, David Sorkin, Shmuel Werses

David Sorkin is Distinguished Professor of History and Jack H. Skirball Director, Center for Jewish Studies, City University of New York Graduate Center. He was formerly Frances and Laurence Weinstein Professor of Jewish Studies and Senior Fellow at the Institute for Research in the Humanities at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. He is the author of The Transformation of German Jewry, 1780-1840 (1987), Moses Mendelssohn and the Religious Enlightenment (1996), and The Berlin Haskalah and German Religious Thought (2000), and is co-editor of Profiles in Diversity: Jews in a Changing Europe, 1750-1870 (1998). He has received grants from the British Academy and the National Endowment for the Humanities. Previously a Fellow of the Oxford Centre for Hebrew and Jewish Studies and St Antony’s College, Oxford, he has been a visiting professor at the Ecole des Hautes Etudes en Sciences Sociales, Paris, and a visiting fellow at the Max Planck Institut für Geschichte, Göttingen.

Shmuel Feiner is Professor of Modern Jewish History at Bar-Ilan University and chairman of the Jerusalem Leo Baeck Institute. He is the author of Haskalah and History: The Emergence of a Modern Jewish Historical Consciousness (2001), also published by the Littman Library, The Jewish Enlightenment (2004), Moses Mendelssohn, Sage of Modernity (2010), and The Origins of Jewish Secularization in Eighteenth-Century Europe (2011).

Note on transliteration
Introduction SHMUEL FEINER and DAVID SORKIN

1 The Early Haskalah DAVID SORKIN
2 Naphtali Herz Wessely and the Cultural Dislocations of an Eighteenth-Century Maskil EDWARD BREUER
3 Enlightenment Values, Jewish Ethics: The Haskalah's Transformation of the Traditional Musar Genre HARRIS BOR
4 Was there a 'Haskalah' in England? Reconsidering an Old Question DAVID B. RUDERMAN
5 Strategy and Ruse in the Haskalah of Mendel Lefin of Satanow NANCY SINKOFF
6 The Struggle of the Mitnagedim and Maskilim against Hasidism: Rabbi Jacob Emden and Judah Leib Mieses YEHUDA FRIEDLANDER
7 Magic and Miracle-Workers in the Literature of the Haskalah IMMANUEL ETKES
8 Portrait of the Maskil as a Young Man SHMUEL WERSES
9 Reality and its Refraction in Descriptions of Women in Haskalah Fiction TOVA COHEN
10 Enlightened Rabbis as Reformers in Russian Jewish Society JOSEPH SALMON
11 Towards a Historical Definition of the Haskalah SHMUEL FEINER

Glossary
Notes on contributors
Bibliography
Index

‘This volume will leave its mark on the research of Haskalah. The authors’ passion for the field and their erudition are evident in each and every page.’ Lev Hakak, Shofar
 

'Offers many new perspectives on the movement. It includes unique and original studies ... The authors are acknowledged experts in their fields ... a valuable addition to any library collection dealing with modern Judaism and is an important update to any collection dealing with European Jewish culture and religion.' Shaul Stampfer, Religious Studies Review
 

Format: Paperback

Edition: New edition

Size: 234 x 156 x 14 mm

270 Pages

ISBN: 9781904113263

Publication: November 1, 2004

Series: The Littman Library of Jewish Civilization

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