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Author(s): Roda, Jessica
Date: 2016
Author(s): Felcher, Anastasia
Date: 2016
Abstract: The thesis is based on three starting points. The first is on the acknowledgement of the lamentable condition of buildings of Jewish-related heritage in cities with a multicultural past across the present-day former Soviet Union. The second is on the acknowledgement of a slow process of gradual recognition of these traces as examples of tangible heritage and a provisional resource for heritage commodification. The third is the on the acknowledgement of ‘heritage’, ‘memory’ and ‘space’ as phenomena that are subject to manipulation on various levels.
After the dissolution of the Soviet Union, the understanding of what constitutes national heritage in the newly-appeared independent states has conformed to correspond with the interpretations and values of national histories. In managerial terms some immovable heritage of ethnic minorities has been returned to the symbolic successors of previous owners. This defined provisional sources of funding for partial renovation of this heritage, as well as its use. The remaining sites, the majority of which are monuments protected by the state, most frequently stay unattended. In order to design policy recommendations to improve the situation, a complex understanding of factors that influence heritage protection, interpretation, and promotion in the post-Soviet space is needed.
Within this state of affairs, the thesis aims to analyze agency behind 'top-down' policies and 'down-up' grass-roots initiatives towards (non)interpretation of Jewish-related heritage sites in Chişinǎu (Moldova), Odessa and L’viv (Ukraine) and Minsk (Belarus). This selection of cities is chosen to reveal the multiplicity of factors that determine apparent similarity in heritage condition and management in the post-Soviet space, but instead reveal diverse dynamics of interaction between heritage and politics; heritage and nationalism; heritage and civil society, etc.
The methodology utilized here includes archival search, participant observation, media and expert opinion analysis, as well as examination of museum exhibitions. The fieldwork included data collection on the actual condition of Jewish heritage in the cities under discussion and interviews with various agents. Elite interviews were analyzed as basis for authoritative heritage discourse before discussing actual heritage projects in these cities. Based on interdisciplinary analysis, the thesis provides an embracing overview of the broad spectrum of agency behind Jewish heritage-related initiatives (or their absence). It then offers recommendations for the advancement of managerial strategies.
Author(s): Amit, Hila
Date: 2017
Abstract: Looking at different perspectives and practices regarding Hebrew’s use or place of use, this chapter seeks to find connections between perceptions of diasporic Hebrew as they are envisioned and practiced in contemporary Berlin. What are the various events and activities taking place with regards to Hebrew in contemporary Berlin? How do Hebrew texts written today in Berlin correspond to the work of Scholem, Rosenzweig and others? Who are the people behind these activities and texts, and what is the political significance of their activities?

The article will open with a description of important notions of Zionist ideology. Then, I will describe briefly main aspects relevant to Israeli emigration. I will explain the importance of the city of Berlin to the Hebrew culture starting from the 18th century, as well as a Zionist center in the first half of the 20st century. The last two sections of this article will explore two figures of Israeli emigrants and their activities in contemporary Berlin. I will follow the activist Tal Hever-Chybowski, who claims to have established the first literary journal to be published in Hebrew in Europe since 1944 (entitled: Mikan Va'eilah - “from here and onwards”). Hever- Chybowski describes his motivation in the following words: “The goal of the journal is to become a literary cultural platform for non-hegemonic and non-sovereign Hebrew, a Hebrew that is free from the shackles of nationality and territory.” I say “claim to have established,” because this journal is not yet published, even though Hever-Chybowski describes it as if it is.

I will also follow the work of Mati Shemoeluf, a Hebrew author working in Berlin, who described the wonders of a Hebrew Library in Berlin. Shemoeluf, just like Hever-Chybowski, can be criticized for his embellishments of reality, since the Hebrew library – at least as Shemoeluf describes it - does not really exist. What are their political motivations, and what form of political activity are they practicing, are the questions I address in this chapter.
Date: 2017
Abstract: The study investigates the main motives for preservation of sites of Jewish heritage tourism (JHT) by studying three locations in Macedonia: Skopje (the capital), Štip (the largest city in the east part of Macedonia) and Bitola (the largest city in the southwest part of Macedonia). The article assesses the presence of several motivations, like: (i) Guilt; (ii) Interest in national history; (iii) Revival of a glorious Past; (iv) Economic benefits; (v) Display of sympathy; and (vi) Dark tourism development. The analysis is based on a qualitative research method and incorporates: (a) Qualitative data analysis, by conducting interviews in June 2016 with key stakeholders from central and local governments as the main policy makers; and (b) Analysis of secondary data sources, achieved by reviewing literature, historical, and statistical data related to Jewish history in Macedonia. Generally, the results point to the presence of strong iconic connection among Macedonians and the Jews that lived in Macedonia. The general findings indicate that by establishing and maintaining JH sites, stakeholders reflect sentiments of sympathy and even admiration to the perished Jewish community and a strong desire to revive a glorious past. Only in the case of Bitola, the potential economic benefits were surfaced as the main motive for initiating activities and investments in JH sites. Finally, the study recommends design and development of JHT product and tailor-made tourist packages as key elements that may boost tourism development in Macedonia alongside with commemoration of the Jews and their ties with the Macedonian people.
Date: 2010
Abstract: Since the early 1990s, and coinciding with the celebratory events of the fifth centenary, new cultural initiatives related to the legacies of Spain’s Jewish inhabitants have been added to the marketing of the country as a tourist destination. This article analyses how these initiatives foreground convivencia [coexistence] as a uniquely Spanish cultural tradition and shape it into a marketable ideological product, by focusing on the town of Hervás, in the province of Cáceres, Extremadura, as a prime example of the complexities inherent in these tourism initiatives. Over the last twelve years Hervás has organized a celebration of its Jewish identity in ‘Los conversos’ [‘The converts’], a three-day festival in which the town’s inhabitants dress up as ‘Jews’ and stage a collective performance of a theatre play related to its Jewish past. Through careful analysis of the gradual changes that have been incorporated into the festival and the play over the years, the article studies the entanglement of desires and anxieties and the multiple contradictions that arise as this town foregrounds its Jewish past to negotiate unresolved issues of transnational, national, regional and local identity. The article combines an analysis of textual sources, especially the literary works on which Hervás has relied to construct the image of itself promoted in the festival, and materials gathered from fieldwork there (promotional materials, video footage and photographs of the celebrations, interviews with organizers and participants, etc.). It also relies on the research undertaken by local historian Marciano de Hervás, and current theorizations of patrimonialization and heritagization (Urry 1995; Kirshenblatt-Gimblett 1998) and the ‘reinvention’ of Jewish culture in Europe (Gruber 2002) in the field of tourism studies.
Date: 2018
Abstract: Issues arise when trying to understand the motivation of policymakers to preserve the assets of cultures that do not belong to the mainstream population. Tunbridge and Ashworth's seminal study on ‘Dissonant Heritage’ and Bennett's developmental model of intercultural sensitivity (DMIS model) provide a basis to evaluate both the motivations and the existence of a cultural dissonance. As there is a growing worldwide trend towards preserving and developing Jewish heritage tourism (JHT) this study examines Jewish heritage sites in three Macedonian cities endowed with rich Jewish history. Unlike previous studies concentrating on the notion of dissonant heritage, this research focuses on the motivation for preserving such sites, an issue hardly tackled before. Previous studies suggested the prevalence of six possible motives: guilt, facing harsh history, emphasis on dark tourism, revival of a harmonious past, respect, and economic benefits. Data were obtained via face-to-face interviews conducted with policy-makers from central and local governments. The interviews were analyzed qualitatively and quantitatively in order to determine the leading motives for preservation. The findings indicate that by establishing and maintaining Jewish Heritage sites, stakeholders reflect sentiments of respect and admiration for the perished Jewish community and a longing for the revival of an elusive harmonious past. The potential economic benefits and dark tourism surfaced only as minor motives. Practically, JH preservation is used to revive dialogue with a forgotten past that may also contribute to urban tourism development in the future. Conceptually, the interviews did not reveal any indication of heritage dissonance, a finding that stands in sharp contrast to the dissonant heritage theory.
Date: 2016
Author(s): Sandri, Olivia
Date: 2013
Abstract: Throughout Europe products of Jewish culture – or what is perceived as such – have become viable components of the popular public domain. Jewish-themed tourism has emerged since the 1990s in a number of European cities after decades of “collective amnesia”, and some of the Jewish areas have recently undergone a ‘Jewish-thematisation’.

The focal point of this article is the usage of heritage in former Jewish areas. The aim is to understand in which ways and to what extent Jewish heritage is used for tourism purposes. A comparison between Krakow and Vilnius underlines what this difference in usage depends on, in the context of increasingly popular cultural and heritage tourism. In order to understand how Jewish-themed tourism has developed an inventory of Jewish heritage and Jewish-themed events in the two cities is made, showing that Jewish heritage is mainly used for economic development through tourism as well as commemoration in Krakow, whereas in Vilnius, it is used for commemoration and for the needs of the local (Jewish) community. The complexity of the topic and the importance of various local factors in the usage of Jewish heritage are shown. There does not exist, neither in Krakow nor in Vilnius, any specific public policies regarding Jewish heritage that can explain the ’degree’ of touristification and ’heritagisation’ of the areas.

Furthermore, a range of connected theoretical issues, such as authenticity, commodification of culture, or ownership of heritage, is raised.
Date: 2012
Abstract: A unique moment in Sephardic music is emerging in the Republic of Serbia. Since 2000, a small but vibrant Sephardic music scene has been formed through the efforts of a small group of individuals. The scene keeps alive a repertoire that has survived many upheavals: the Holocaust and the near-total extermination of Sephardic sacred music practitioners from the region; a half-century of religious suppression under the Yugoslav government; and the political turmoil of the 1990s and the establishment of the Republic of Serbia from what was once Yugoslavia. Each of these major socio-political shifts had an impact on how today's musicians learned and contributed to the creation of Sephardic music. Since 2000, the maintenance and reworking of the Sephardic music scene in Belgrade has taken place almost entirely because of small group individuals. The Sephardic music scene that has emerged is now made up of one concert stage ensemble, Shira u’tfila [Song and Prayer], and a collection of synagogue singers. Though the scene comprises only a small number of musicians, these individuals exercise considerable power in determining how broader categories like Sephardic and Jewish are represented and contribute to the civic, state, and international public imagination.

The expression of being Serbian, Sephardic, and Jewish is shaped and transmitted by this small group of musicians as they actively engage in a variety of discourses. These discourses concern the role of technology in the transmission of their practice, historical consciousness and nostalgia, and personal and social identities. By looking at how musical and social domains are established and promoted through performance, I show how personal taste and individual creativity play a role in representing Jewish culture in Serbia and Serbian-Jewish culture to an international audience. Ultimately, Shira u’tfila helps redefine ideas of Serbian Jewishness, and articulates an understanding of music in Jewish life as behavior that embraces both sacred and
secular, both Jewish and non-Jewish, repertoire.
Author(s): Kijek, Kamil
Date: 2017
Abstract: Artykuł ten przedstawia najważniejsze wątki krytycznej debaty wokół treści wystawy stałej Muzeum Historii Żydów Polskich Polin. Analizując różnice między dwoma polami badawczymi – studiami żydowskimi i studiami nad relacjami polsko-żydowskimi – autor broni tezy, że wiele krytycznych głosów w debacie wynika z niezrozumienia różnic między przedmiotem badań tych dwóch pól, po części wynikającego z obecnej sytuacji – panującego nacjonalizmu i etnocentryzmu, wywierających wpływ również na polskie debaty historyczne. Domaganie się od wystawy opowiadającej tysiącletnią historię Żydów na ziemiach polskich, aby koncentrowała się głównie na stosunku społeczeństwa większościowego do Żydów, grozi popełnieniem błędu teleologii, to jest interpretowaniem wcześniejszych wydarzeń i procesów jako nieuchronnie prowadzących do Zagłady, a także pomijaniem wszystkich tych elementów dziejów żydowskich, które z perspektywy Holokaustu i badań nad antysemityzmem nie mają znaczenia. Tego rodzaju postulaty i stojące za nimi metahistoryczne założenia grożą pozbawieniem Żydów roli podmiotów w ich własnej historii. Z drugiej strony autor tekstu wskazuje na elementy narracji wystawy stałej Muzeum Polin, w których rzeczywiście w niedostateczny sposób uwzględniona została problematyka antysemityzmu jako ważnego elementu żydowskiego doświadczenia i kluczowego czynnika dziejów Żydów w Polsce. Przywrócenie rzeczywistego dialogu i komunikacji pomiędzy przedstawicielami studiów żydowskich i badaczami relacji polsko-żydowskich, przy zachowaniu autonomii tych dwóch pól i zrozumieniu różnic pomiędzy nimi, jest też istotne z punktu widzenia niewątpliwych zagrożeń w postaci prób wykorzystania Muzeum Polin w budowie upolitycznionych, bezkrytycznych wizji historii Polski i stosunku Polaków do Żydów.

Author(s): Loentz, Elizabeth
Date: 2006
Abstract: Minority and immigrant Germans' embrace of the derogatory term Kanake as a self-ascription and of the low-status ethnolect Kanak Sprak has been compared to US rappers' combative use of "niggah" and Black English. This essay, however, compares the revaluation of the term Kanake, a non-assimilatory Kanak identity, and the ethnolect Kanak Sprak to some early 20th century German Jews' revaluation and embrace of Eastern European Jewish culture and Yiddish. It demonstrates also how non-minority and non-Jewish Germans have used Yiddish and Kanak Sprak in literature, theater, film, and popular culture to re-inscribe ethnic difference, especially at times when minorities and Jews were becoming indistinguishable from non-minority Germans (emancipation edicts or nationality law reform). Because Kanak Sprak is inseparable from HipHop culture, the second half of the essay examines the many parallels between the importation and naturalization of German HipHop and German Klezmer. Both were imported from the United States in the early 1980s; and following the fall of the Berlin Wall and German re-unification, both have played a role in German Vergangenheitsbewältigung [mastering the past]. While HipHop and Klezmer have become the soundtrack of German anti-racism, anti-Nazism, and multiculturalism; some observers are critical of non-minority and non-Jewish Germans' appropriation or instrumentalization of ethnic music, and have cited instances of antisemitism and racism in German Klezmer and HipHop.
Author(s): Underhill, Karen C.
Date: 2011
Abstract: In Israeli director Yael Bartana’s 2007 film Mary Koszmary—meaning “Bad Dreams” or “Nightmares”—a young Polish politician delivers a resounding speech to an empty, crumbling, communist-era Stadion Dziesięciolecia in Warsaw. The speech, he says, is an appeal: “This is a call. . . . It is an appeal for life. We want three million Jews to return to Poland, to live with us again. We need you! Please come back!” This article considers the powerful and perhaps disturbing premise of these lines and explores their possible meanings in a contemporary Polish context. What can it mean for Poles and Polish culture to need Jews—and in particular, to need those Jews who can never return? The complex phenomenon of Jewish memory in Poland and Eastern Europe cannot be contained within specific, present-day borders—whether of geography or of academic discipline: similar dynamics to those Bartana has identified in Poland exist throughout the region. Thus, against the background of Bartana’s film, the article considers the growing phenomenon and importance of local Jewish festivals in Poland and present-day Ukraine, focusing in detail on two specific festivals: the annual festival “Encounters with Jewish Culture,” held in Chmielnik, Poland, and the biannual Bruno Schulz Festival in Drohobych, Ukraine. The analysis explores ways that the memory of Polish Jews—and more specifically the figure of the absent Polish Jew—can function as a central element in the construction of new, communal Polish and Ukrainian narratives since the fall of Communism.