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Date: 2016
Author(s): Muir, Simo
Date: 2009
Abstract: Artikkelin tarkoituksena on kuvata sosiolingvistisestä näkökulmasta Helsingin juutalaisten kontakteja ja kielenvaihtoja ja analysoida joitakin juutalaisten etnolektisen puheen ilmiöitä. Artikkeli tarkastelee tätä kenttää etnolektin yleisten määritelmien sekä jiddišinjälkeisen juutalaisen etnolektin (Post-Yiddish Jewish Ethnolect) käsitteen valossa.

Artikkelin ensimmäinen osa tarkastelee Helsingin juutalaisen yhteisön muodostumista, juutalaisen yhteisön monikielisyyttä ja yhteisössä tapahtuneita kielenvaihtoja jiddiaistä ruotsin kautta suomeen. Myös venäjän, saksan ja (nyky)heprean kielellä on on ollut roolinsa yhteisön monikielisyydessä. Vastoin yleistä käsitystä, Helsingin juutalainen yhteisö säilytti jiddišin kielen verrattain pitkään ruotsin ja suomen rinnalla. Jiddišin kielellä oli tärkeä sija kulttuurielämässä sekä uskonnollisessa toiminnassa. Artikkeli pohtii myös eri tekijöitä, jotka johtivat lopulta jiddišin kielen syrjäytymiseen.

Artikkelin toinen osa tarkastelee lehdissä ja juutalaisissa revyyteksteissä esiintyviä vanhan juutalaisruotsin ja juutalaissuomen parodioita. Nämä osoittavat omalta osaltaan, että valtaväestöllä oli selvä kuva siitä, mitkä olivat juutalaisruotsin tai juutalaissuomen ominaispiirteet ja että Helsingin juutalaisten kielelliseen repertoaariin kuului jiddišinvaikutteinen varieteetti. Myös tänä päivänä on havaittavissa ryhmänsisäisessä kanssakäymisessä niin ruotsin kuin suomenkin kielessä erityinen etnolektinen rekisteri, jota voidaan käyttää tunnusmerkkisissä tilanteissa (marked situations). Tämä etnolektinen rekisteri esiintyy erityisesti tilanteissa, joissa etnisen ryhmäidentiteetin rooli on keskeinen. Artikkeli tarkastelee ilmiötä kirjallisten ja suullisten lähteiden avulla ja tuo esille sen keskeisiä piirteitä.
Author(s): Kosmin, Barry A.
Date: 2016
Abstract: Launched by the American Jewish Joint Distribution
Committee’s International Centre for Community
Development (JDC-ICCD), and conducted by a research
team at Trinity College (Hartford, Connecticut, USA)
between June and August 2015, the Third Survey of
European Jewish Leaders and Opinion Formers presents
the results of an online survey administered to 314
respondents in 29 countries. The survey was conducted
online in five languages: English, French, Spanish, German
and Hungarian. The Survey of European Jewish Leaders
and Opinion Formers is conducted every three or four
years using the same format, in order to identify trends
and their evolution. Findings of the 2015 edition were
assessed and evaluated based on the results of previous
surveys (2008 and 2011).
The survey posed Jewish leaders and opinion formers a
range of questions about major challenges and issues that
concern European Jewish communities in 2015, and about
their expectations of how communities will evolve over
the next 5-10 years. The 45 questions (see Appendix) dealt
with topics that relate to internal community structures
and their functions, as well as the external environment
affecting communities. The questionnaire also included
six open-ended questions in a choice of five languages.
These answers form the basis of the qualitative analysis
of the report. The questions were organized under the
following headings:
• Vision & Change (6 questions)
• Decision-Making & Control (1 question)
• Lay Leadership (1 question)
• Professional Leadership (2 questions)
• Status Issues & Intermarriage (5 questions)
• Organizational Frameworks (2 questions)
• Community Causes (2 questions)
• Jewish Education (1 question)
• Funding (3 questions)
• Communal Tensions (3 questions)
• Anti-Semitism/Security (5 questions)
• Europe (1 question)
• Israel (1 question)
• Future (2 questions)
• Personal Profile (9 questions)
Date: 2013
Abstract: The aim of this study is to analyze how ethnic-boundary drawing has been influenced in the urban
context by the turbulent events of twentieth-century Europe. The analysis is specifically applied to the
social boundaries of the small Helsinki Jewish community from the early twentieth century until the
In the period covered by this research, Helsinki evolved from a multilingual and heterogeneous
military town of the Russian empire into the capital of an independent nation. As one of the few
Eastern European Orthodox Jewish communities not destroyed in the Holocaust, the history of the
Helsinki Jewish community offers a different set of spatial contexts that make this history an
empirical case study of changing ethnic relations from one generation to another.
My study suggests that empirical materials can be used as clues for teasing into existence the
long-vanished practices of boundary-drawing done at various times in the past. Collecting and
organizing information in archives is always guided by decisions that reflect the contemporary ideas
of relevant and meaningful social categories. Consequently, as Jews ‘in Finland’ became Finnish
Jews, the ethnic background subsequently lost its distinction in the archival material; in short, the
sources gradually became “mute” in this respect. My research strategy is to focus on questions
concerning the economic aspects of social boundaries, for example, whether the members of the
Helsinki Jewish congregation were entrepreneurs or were self-employed.
I have operationalized occupational status to analyze changes in the social position of the
community. The occupational titles were collected from three different cross-section years and
organized by using a Historical International Classification of Occupations (HISCO) Scheme. By
combining the occupational titles with the data on the Jewish-owned companies, I have established a
set of descriptive statistics. Supported by the findings of this empirical material, my study analyzes
how the concept of Finnish Jews has taken shape over the entire period of this study.
Contemporaries writing about the Jews of Finland did not use concepts of ‘ethnic boundaries,’ but
nevertheless considered questions related to economic aspects as the key elements in modern
societies. Such questions were a constant theme in modern economic antisemitism with a major
influence on Jewish policies, such as the restriction of Jewish occupations in Finland until 1918,
which in turn influenced the (counter-)narratives of Jewish business. This is what makes the Jewish
occupations so interesting – and also makes discussing them such a sensitive issue.
The community is an important part of the history of Helsinki, but it has only been accepted as a
part of the larger Finnish society since the Second World War. During this process, Jews were clearly
less frequently categorized as Jews and more frequently categorized by the professions they
In this study I have contextualized different aspects of what has been selected and written down as
Finnish-Jewish history. This involves discovering the political positions of its various authors. All
histories on the Finnish Jews have been written during the post-Second World War period and, in
consequence, are unavoidably viewed through post-Shoah/Cold War lenses. In these writings, the
national and transnational aspects are totally severed and become, indeed, mutually exclusive.
The Jewish history of Helsinki is often told as a collective story, where each generation faces
similar challenges and options. In this way, the past has been described as a joint striving for all
Finnish Jews. In reality, wide economic differences have played an important role in what is
ultimately a business-oriented community. In this narrative, the Jewish history has been reduced to a
bare minimum in order to serve as a collective story. Consequently, in the histories of the city of
Helsinki, Jews have either been described as poor, or they have not been remembered at al
Author(s): Kahan, Semy
Date: 2007
Abstract: The second half of the 20th century has been a period of increasing assimilation for the Jews at the same time as they have gained the acceptance of their environment in nearly all countries. One of the most striking expressions of this has been a rapidly rising tendency toward mixed marriages. This tendency has created a serious concern about the future of the Jewish people and a growing debate both regarding the following questions: Is it worth to reach out to the mixed-marriage families in order to try and prevent them from growing further apart from Judaism? Would it be preferable to concentrate on people who have not yet taken the step over the mixed marriage-line and try to prevent this phenomenon, or is it best to work simultaneously in both directions? Another debated question is how to effectively use the teaching of Judaism to the young generation as a prophylactic for assimilation. The growing assimilation has lead to greater investment in this area with an increasing amount of Jewish schools and other forms of Jewish instruction, and researchers have estimated the efficiency of Jewish education.

The Finnish Jews are also touched by the tendencies and problems mentioned above. As to mixed marriages, their frequency is among the highest in the world, but despite this, a very high percentage of the children in the Jewish community in Helsinki receive Jewish instruction within the framework of a primary and a secondary school of 9 classes and a preschool starting from 4 years of age. The community gives a very high priority to the school and invests important economical and human resources for this purpose. The school has about 100 pupils. Their profile has in the last years become significantly more heterogenic as several families have joined the community, especially from Israel, but also from Russia and a few other countries. This has lead to changes in the study program of the school and a more systematic evaluation of the program. The governors of the school have expressed their interest for conducting a study, which among other things would give a better understanding about the Jewish identity of the students, compared with the background of their homes’ Jewishness, as well as other questions connected to the Jewish objectives of the school.

This research intends to give an idea about The students and their parents regarding the following aspects: Jewish identity and way of life; Attitudes towards and expectations of the Jewish education in the school; Relations to the non-Jewish surroundings (friends, Jewish self-esteem, the attitudes of the surrounding world); Contacts with the non-Jewish parent’s family; Attitude towards Israel; Influence of the home in parallel with the school education; Motivation of parents in choosing the Jewish school for the children; Attitude of parents towards their children’s friends; Motivation of parents to participate in a study program of Jewish topics; Comparison of the data between Finnish-Jewish families and families which have immigrated into Finland. The population of the study will include pupils of the 5th, 6th, 8th and 9th classes and their parents, as well as the pupils of 12th class and their parents. .
Date: 2016
Abstract: The conditions of social life that are reflected in the conditions leading to the formation of the individual’s identity may be changing due to the influences of postmodernity. In Finland today, Jews form a small minority group within the borders of secularized Lutheranism. How does the Finnish Jewry cope with the constant transformation of social values in this context? How does Jewishness appear in their self-perception and in their daily lives? The purpose of this thesis is investigate how members of the Jewish Community of Helsinki view Judaism in their own lives and in their community and how do they observe the rules of the Halakhah – the Jewish law. This work provides an introduction to traditional perspectives of the questions that are often topics of debates in postmodern Jewish communities. In one sentence: How do they Jew in public and private life in modern Finland?

The research was put into practice by combining quantitative and qualitative methods, including a quantitative questionnaire that was distributed to all 777 adult members of the community and personal interviews with 8 individuals among them. Both the qualitative and the quantitative research questions explored issues of Jewish life and traditions as well as attitudes towards the most common Jewish issues in contemporary Finland.

The results showed that the vast majority of the respondents strongly identify as Jews. They have loyalty towards their Jewish heritage, but also feel a strong sense of belonging to Finland. They are generally lenient towards Halakhah, and despite being members of the Modern-Orthodox community, they do not necessarily live orthodox Jewish lifestyles according to the traditional – orthodox – perspective.
Author(s): Larsson, Julia
Date: 2014
Abstract: Tavoitteet. Suomessa asuu pieni juutalainen vähemmistö, jonka olemassaoloa on jo pitkään uhannut ennen kaikkea sen jäsenten voimakas assimiloituminen. Suomen juutalaiset nuoret aikuiset, jotka melkein poikkeuksetta elävät seka-avioliitoissa, ovat seuraavan juutalaisen sukupolven kasvattajia. Siksi tässä tutkimuksessa pyritään ymmärtämään ja kuulemaan juuri näiden nuorten aikuisten käsityksiä juutalaisuudestaan ja kaksoisidentiteetistään. Toisin sanoen tutkimuksen avulla halutaan saada selville, mitä juutalaisuus merkitsee heille, jotka jatkavat juutalaisen vähemmistön perintöä. Maamme juutalaisten tapoja ja asenteita on aikaisemmin tutkinut Lundgren (2002) sekä Ruotsissa ja Tanskassa Dencik (1993, 2002). Työllä pyritään myös jatkamaan maassamme alkanutta keskustelua vähemmistöjen identiteettineuvotteluista ( Kuusisto 2011, Klingenberg 2014, Rissanen 2014).

Menetelmät. Tämä laadullinen monitapaustutkimus toteutettiin lähettämällä kysely postitse kaikille 137 vuosina 1976-1986 syntyneille Helsingin juutalaisen seurakunnan jäsenille. Kyselyyn vastasi 28 nuorta aikuista. Juutalaisuuden merkitystä Suomen juutalaisille nuorille aikuisille tutkittiin laadullisin keinoin, induktiivisella lähestymistavalla, joskin teoriaohjaavalla tutkimusotteella. Kaksoisidentiteettiä ja siten vastaajien akkulturaatioasenteita lähestyttiin Dencikin (1993) diasporajuutalaisen identiteettiä kuvaavan mallin avulla.

Tulokset ja johtopäätökset. Aineistolähtöisen sisällönanalyysin avulla selvisi, että juutalaisuus merkitsi vastaaajille ennen kaikkea Dencikin (1993) mallin Juutalaisuutta kokemuksien ja elämyksien tulkitsijana sekä yhteenkuuluvuutta kansaan. Tähän juutalaisuuden osa-alueeseen liittyi vastaajien itsensä sanoittamana juutalaisuuden kokeminen saamisena ja antamisena, elämäntapana sekä voimakkaana yhteenkuuluvuuden tunteena muihin juutalaisiin. Kaksoisidentiteetti puolestaan näyttäytyi tasapainoisena kokonaisuutena, jossa ollaan ennen kaikkea suomenjuutalaisia, toisin sanoen, vastaajat kokivat olevansa ensisijaisesti juutalaisia, joiden kotimaa on Suomi.
Date: 2009
Abstract: The European Union Agency for Fundamental Rights presents its 5th brief
update of its 2004 report “Manifestations of anti-Semitism in the EU”. The
overview contains the latest governmental and non-governmental
statistical data covering 2001 to 2008 for those EU Member States that
have official or unofficial data and statistics on anti-Semitic incidents. The
Agency collects regularly publicly available official and unofficial data and
information on racism and xenophobia in the EU Member States through
its Racism and Xenophobia Network (RAXEN) with a special focus on

The Agency’s data collection work shows that most Member States do not
have official or even unofficial data and statistics on anti-Semitic incidents.
Even where data exist they are not comparable, since they are collected
following different methodologies. For some countries, RAXEN National
Focal Points provide the Agency with lists of cases collected either ad hoc
by civil society organisations or through the media with varying degrees of
validity and reliability. Detailed data and incidents lists are presented in the
FRA electronic database, Info_Portal at
The Agency’s regular review of data collection systems indicates that most
Member States have a serious problem of underreporting, particularly in
reference to official systems of data collection that are based on police
records and on crime and law statistics, because not all anti-Semitic
incidents registered officially are categorised under the label “antiSemitism”
and/or because not all anti-Semitic incidents are reported to the
official body by the victims or witnesses of an incident.

A complementary problem to underreporting is misreporting and overreporting:
This could be the case in unofficial data collection carried out by
organisations that do not provide information concerning their
Date: 2004
Abstract: Following concerns from many quarters over what seemed to be a serious
increase in acts of antisemitism in some parts of Europe, especially in
March/April 2002, the EUMC asked the 15 National Focal Points of its Racism
and Xenophobia Network (RAXEN) to direct a special focus on antisemitism in
its data collection activities. This comprehensive report is one of the outcomes
of that initiative. It represents the first time in the EU that data on antisemitism
has been collected systematically, using common guidelines for each Member

The national reports delivered by the RAXEN network provide an overview of
incidents of antisemitism, the political, academic and media reactions to it,
information from public opinion polls and attitude surveys, and examples of
good practice to combat antisemitism, from information available in the years
2002 – 2003.

On receipt of these national reports, the EUMC then asked an independent
scholar, Dr Alexander Pollak, to make an evaluation of the quality and
availability of this data on antisemitism in each country, and identify problem
areas and gaps. The country-by-country information provided by the 15
National Focal Points, and the analysis by Dr Pollak, form Chapter 1 and
Chapter 2 of this report respectively.

Finally, in the light of the information and analysis provided by this exercise,
the report concludes with a number of proposals for action to the EU and its
Member States on concrete measures to combat antisemitism, including legal
and educational measures, and recommendations for improving the monitoring
and recording of antisemitic incidents.

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