how much does religious identity influence the choice of ethnic identity, and vice versa.
The research is based on 8 in-depth interviews collected during Sefer Center’s trip to Smolensk Oblast in 2016. The interviewees
were selected according to the following criteria: regular visits to the synagogue (twice a month or more) and age between 14 and 35.
The working hypothesis is that the number, the frame of mind, and the identity of the young people who visit the synagogue are influenced by the following factors: 1) ethnic and religious identity of the family members and close people of the respondents and their disposition towards various confessions and ethnicities; 2) the rabbi’s policy in ethnic issues and traditions, how loyal he is to rule bending and now active he is in attracting the youth to the synagogue; 3) the environment: the influence of historically significant places of Smolensk Oblast and memories of remarkable historical events that occurred on its territory.
After analyzing the data we have drawn the following conclusions. The main reason for the interviewees to choose the Jewish identity is the prevailing of such identity in their parents. For those whose parents are both Jewish this argument is sufficient. If only parent is Jewish, a young person starts seeking for additional arguments to “allow” himself/herself be Jewish. Such reasons may be their sympathy towards Judaism and/or Jewish customs and the feeling of one’s “distinction”. Sometimes for the final integration into the Jewish environment the interviewees conduct Giyur or circumcision, the latter being not only for religious reasons. If the young people don’t feel such sympathies or don’t perform the special rituals for integration, they leave the community because they don’t feel enough “Jewishness” to remain there. The forming of one or another religious identity depends mostly on which identity is considered the right one in the family. Also, in contrast to ethnic identity, religious identity changes more often and is dependent on the person’s environment and period of time.
Thus, the working hypothesis has been confirmed in a number of points. 1) The forming of identities is indeed influenced by the identities of parents and social circles of the interviewees and the rabbi’s policy towards the youth and other members of the community. 2) It is also influenced to a lesser extent by which religious and ethnic identity is prevalent and considered normal in a particular region. Historical events and places have basically no influence on the identity formation.
established in Ukraine since 1991. Restored and new synagogues serve as religious and cultural centers.
The Jewish institutions focus their efforts on the integration of the history of the Ukrainian Jews
into the historical memory of Ukraine. Ukrainian Jews also protested on Maidan Square.
being in and out of their borders, in and out of their communities and regarding social, political and
economical factors of the place they lived in, the Jewish people were reconsidering and reconstructing
their ethnoreligious and cultural identity. In this paper, the contemporary Jewish identity will be
explored, —both individually and collectively— in the context of the pluralistic city of Thessaloniki,
Greece. Which are the components that their identity is compromised of? On the one hand, how
does the factor of their recent Sephardic (Judeo-Spanish) origin influence their identitarian reference?
On the other hand, how does the current state of Israel remodel and form new identitarian aspects
of them? And finally, how does the Greek context affect their personal, communal and national
identity? Living in a Greek secular state, where the majority of its citizens regard themselves as
Orthodox Christian believers, what relations might be shaped between the non Jews and the Jews?
How do the Jews perceive their self identity? By using empirical data of fieldwork, the writer will
endeavor to attribute the diasporic paths of the long term indigenous, Greek, Jewish identity —both
national and religious— in the geographical place of the city of Thessaloniki.
Jewish community in Bulgaria, Hungary, Latvia, Poland and Romania.
There was wide agreement among the populations’ value prioritization,
but they are not monolithic. Overall, family-related values were more
important than materialistic values. Those in Romania were the most
religious, those in Hungary the least so.
A graphic portrayal of the data is presented and interpreted, guided
by the Schwartz axiological typology. Sub-populations by home country
and age group are compared in the context of this model. The older
cohort tends towards Family-related values, while the younger cohort
tends towards values of Hedonism and Stimulation. The placement of
the national sub-groups illustrates their relative emphasis on materialist
values versus post-materialist values of self-enhancement, which reflects
the degree of democratization of the countries and the socio-economic
level of the Jewish communities.
The authors provide an introduction to the series of interviews as well as a detailed history of the community. A chronology, a map of Dijon, and photos of many interviewees are included. The book also provides an update on recent events in the community, a suggested reading list, and a bibliography.
In total, 2,125 responses were collected, of which 890 full responses were taken for further analysis. The survey sample spans 27 European countries.
The report is available in English and in Hebrew.
in Moldova in the 1990–2000s. he author presents evidence in favor of good prospects of the Jewish community
in Moldova: the state policy which allowed creating cultural national autonomies, the activity of CHABAD,
support of the community life provided by the local small businessmen, as well as the use of Yiddish.
structure has been highly significant in the post-Soviet environment of
the recent decades. Attempts to institutionalize Jewish communities in the countries of the former Soviet Union—post-Soviet Jews, no matter where they live today, need to resolve a plethora of problems similar in nature but different in scope. The search for cultural, national, and linguistic identity remains a firm objective. It is only natural that in such circumstances the language problem is a key identifying factor. The article looks at the contemporary role and status of Yiddish taking the example of Ukraine, where the tradition of this language, has never been broken despite the hardships and troubles of the past century.
and homosexual – to gradually accepting Beit Haverim as an interlocutor. But she also tells the story of the growing awareness among rabbis and the organized community that a compound reality actually exists
The lack of leadership in the Jewish community in Hungary prevents an obstacle to the promotion of Jewish peoplehood as a focal point for developing the community of tomorrow. The Hungarian Jewish community suffers from a weak and ineffective structure and a lack of leadership. Nevertheless, the last decade has witnessed a revival of Jewish life in Hungary, with a particular focus on Jewish peoplehood. This focus is both a challenge and an opportunity for the Jewish community in Hungary.