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Author(s): Šiljak, Lea
Date: 2003
Author(s): Hofman, Nila Ginger
Date: 2018
Author(s): Leite, Naomi
Date: 2017
Abstract: How are local understandings of identity, relatedness, and belonging transformed in a global era? How does international tourism affect possibilities for who one can become?

In urban Portugal today, hundreds of individuals trace their ancestry to 15th century Jews forcibly converted to Catholicism, and many now seek to rejoin the Jewish people as a whole. For the most part, however, these self-titled Marranos ("hidden Jews") lack any direct experience of Jews or Judaism, and Portugal's tiny, tightly knit Jewish community offers no clear path of entry. According to Jewish law, to be recognized as a Jew one must be born to a Jewish mother or pursue religious conversion, an anathema to those who feel their ancestors' Judaism was cruelly stolen from them. After centuries of familial Catholicism, and having been refused inclusion locally, how will these self-declared ancestral Jews find belonging among "the Jewish family," writ large? How, that is, can people rejected as strangers face-to-face become members of a global imagined community - not only rhetorically, but experientially?

Leite addresses this question through intimate portraits of the lives and experiences of a network of urban Marranos who sought contact with foreign Jewish tourists and outreach workers as a means of gaining educational and moral support in their quest. Exploring mutual imaginings and direct encounters between Marranos, Portuguese Jews, and foreign Jewish visitors, Unorthodox Kin deftly tracks how visions of self and kin evolve over time and across social spaces, ending in an unexpected path to belonging. In the process, the analysis weaves together a diverse set of current anthropological themes, from intersubjectivity to international tourism, class structures to the construction of identity, cultural logics of relatedness to transcultural communication.

A compelling evocation of how ideas of ancestry shape the present, how feelings of kinship arise among far-flung strangers, and how some find mystical connection in a world said to be disenchanted, Unorthodox Kin will appeal to a wide audience interested in anthropology, sociology, Jewish studies, and religious studies. Its accessible, narrative-driven style makes it especially well suited for introductory and advanced courses in general cultural anthropology, ethnography, theories of identity and social categorization, and the study of globalization, kinship, tourism, and religion.
Author(s): Kosmin, Barry A.
Date: 2018
Abstract: The Fourth Survey of European Jewish Community Leaders and Professionals, 2018 presents the results of an online survey offered in 10 languages and administered to 893 respondents in 29 countries. Conducted every three years using the same format, the survey seeks to identify trends and their evolution in time.

The survey asked Jewish lay leaders and community professionals questions regarding future community priorities, identifying the main threats to Jewish life, views on the safety and security situation in their cities, including emergency preparedness, and opinions on an array of internal community issues. Examples include conversions, membership criteria policies on intermarriage, and their vision of Europe and Israel.

The respondents were comprised of presidents and chairpersons of nationwide “umbrella organizations” or Federations; presidents and executive directors of private Jewish foundations, charities, and other privately funded initiatives; presidents and main representatives of Jewish communities that are organized at a city level; executive directors and programme coordinators, as well as current and former board members of Jewish organizations; among others.

The JDC International Centre for Community Development established the survey as a means to identify the priorities, sensibilities and concerns of Europe’s top Jewish leaders and professionals working in Jewish institutions, taking into account the changes that European Jewry has gone through since 1989, and the current political challenges and uncertainties in the continent. In a landscape with few mechanisms that can truly gauge these phenomena, the European Jewish Community Leaders Survey is an essential tool for analysis and applied research in the field of community development.

The Survey team was directed by Dr. Barry Kosmin (Trinity College), who has conducted several large national social surveys and opinion polls in Europe, Africa and the U.S., including the CJF 1990 US National Jewish Population Survey.
Date: 2018
Abstract: Problems of religious and ethnic identity are especially pertinent for people of Jewish heritage in post-Soviet states. Radical changes of the 20th century made the society more secular, put distinctions between definitions of being “Jew” and “Judaist”; the number of mixed marriages grew, and the young generations now learn traditions not from parents but from public lectures in Jewish communities. In this paper we have tried to find out what has brought young people to the Jewish community of Smolensk, why they choose to remain there, and whether they consider themselves Jewish. We have been especially interested in understanding
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.
Date: 2018
Abstract: The article considers the features of the correlation of ethnic and religious identifiers in the process of “revival” of the activities of the Jewish community of Perm in the post-Soviet period. Both types of identifiers which due to the specificity of Judaism as a nationally oriented religion analyzed as significant in the process of defining of phenomenon of the community. The main problem is that the cultural component of Judaism is the most important consolidating factor in the construction of the Jewish community. At the 1990’s. the community was a consolidated group, where Judaism is the connecting element. The cultural component of this system comes to the fore, and activities in this area contribute to the position of the community in the intercultural and urban space. Mass public events attested relevance of the cultural component of Judaism. Social and cultural activity had due to enter the Jewish community into the social space of the city, legitimizing its activity. Change of eras of the turn of the 1990s has contributed rise of appeal to the cultural component of the Jewish tradition. At the same time, cultural identity did not always fully coincide with the confessional one. Interviews with members of the community confirmed that the “revival” took place in Jewish cultural life, and the religious component played the role of an external occasion for the consolidation of the community. The emergence of religion from the “social ghetto” facilitated the observance of rites and norms of cult practice, accelerated the process of legitimizing the ethno-confessional community. The cultural component of Judaism is also a factor of internal communication in the community. The number of Jews who visited religious events and do not attend prayers, indicates the relevance of events that emphasize national identity. Getting a free meal by the older generation is also an economic factor that contributes to the consolidation of the community. The cultural activities of the community described by the respondents testify to the inclusion of Judaism in the inter-confessional sphere of the city. Project activity gives an opportunity to familiarize the population with Jewish culture, contributes to the regulation of interethnic relations within the society, and the formation of tolerant attitudes towards representatives of different faiths. Members and representatives of the Jewish community actively participate in religious events, which take place both in the walls of the synagogue and on city sites. The development and implementation of projects aimed at increasing the religious literacy of the population contributes to the formation of a tolerant society.
Date: 2018
Abstract: Zwischen Berghain und Club Odessa, zwischen Assimilation und Desintegration, zwischen orthodox, liberal und säkular: Achtzig Jahre nach der Reichspogromnacht zeigt sich das jüdische Leben in Deutschland in einer ungeahnten Vielfalt. Junge Jüdinnen und Juden ergreifen in diesem Buch das Wort. Gibt es im 21. Jahrhundert so etwas wie ein „deutsches Judentum“? Wie sinnvoll ist das Reden von einer jüdischen Renaissance, wenn sich Jüdinnen und Juden heute ganz neu und in Abgrenzung zu alten Bildern und Vorstellungen definieren? Was bedeutet es für Deutschland, wenn sich Jüdinnen und Juden mit anderen religiösen, ethnischen und kulturellen Minderheiten solidarisieren und sich nicht gegen sie ausspielen lassen möchten? Und wie ist dem neu erwachenden Antisemitismus zu begegnen?

Die Generation der Autorinnen und Autoren in dieser Sammlung steht heute für ein neues jüdisches Selbstbewusstsein und für neue Selbstbehauptung. Es wird deutlich, dass sich die Autorinnen und Autoren einbringen möchten. Es wird gegen altbewährte Klischees und Voreingenommenheiten angeschrieben. Der Band fasst die Entwicklungen der letzten dreißig Jahre zusammen und weist hinaus auf die Zukunft einer Gemeinschaft, die sich in einem Prozess der Identitätsfindung neu definiert. Es entsteht das Bild eines lebendigen, vielfältigen jungen Judentums in Deutschland, das immer stärker Räume für sich innerhalb der Gesamtgesellschaft einfordert. Pluralität ist eine der neuen Werte einer sich verändernden deutschen und europäischen Gesellschaft. Diese Pluralität ist dem Judentum seit jeher inhärent. Und in Anbetracht gesellschaftlicher Diskurse, in denen die Herausforderung der Pluralität immer an erster Stelle genannt wird, zeigt dieser Band für alle Leser*innen: Juden und Jüdinnen haben der Gesellschaft viel zu geben an Erfahrungen mit Pluralität. Dass zu dieser ein intensiver Streit gehört, das ist so selbstverständlich wie das Ziel, dass das Streiten zu einem Gelingen einer gemeinsamen Lebenswelt beitragen muss, soll der Streit fruchtbar und somit sinnvoll sein. Das Machloket, für das Hannah Peaceman in ihrem Beitrag plädiert, ist ein wesentliches Merkmal einer jüngeren Generation an Jüdinnen und Juden, die streiten, auch streitbar sein möchten. Aber alle Autorinnen und Autoren dieses Bandes vereint der Wunsch, unsere gemeinsame deutsche und europäische Lebenswelt mitzugestalten, sie für alle lebenswerter zu machen.
Date: 2018
Date: 2013
Abstract: Монография представляет собой попытку реконструировать модели этнического, национально-гражданского и религиозного самосознания постсоветской еврейской молодежи, с привлечением собранного авторами полевого материала. В работе рассматривается, в чем проявляется еврейская идентичность молодых людей. Внимание уделяется таким темам, как формирование этнической самоидентификации и религиозный опыт еврейской молодежи; стремление разнообразных еврейских организаций сконструировать новую еврейскую идентичность на постсоветском пространстве; стиль жизни и формы проведения досуга молодежи; система ценностей молодых людей еврейского происхождения, включая их отношение к Государству Израиль и память о Холокосте.

Впервые воедино собраны материалы восьми исследований, проведенных авторами в течение последних десяти лет, и большая часть полученных данных публикуется впервые. Это позволяет получить доступ к беспрецедентно большому массиву информации и проанализировать исследовательские вопросы более углубленно, чем это когда-либо делалось прежде.

Книга может представлять интерес для социологов, этнологов, антропологов, культурологов и специалистов по иудаике, а также для широкого круга читателей, интересующихся современными проблемами еврейства
Date: 2015
Author(s): Lev Ari, Lilach
Date: 2013
Abstract: This paper describes and analyzes the multiple ethnic identities
and identifications among first-generation Jewish Israeli immigrants
in Europe, and specifically in London and Paris, by means of closedend
questionnaires (N=114) and in-depth semi-structured interviews
(N=23).

Israelis who live in Europe are strongly attached to Israel and are
proud to present themselves as Israelis. Despite their place of residence,
these Israelis, particularly those residing in London and over the age
of 35, manage to find ways to preserve their Israeli identity. They also
perceive the need to expose their children to other Israelis as another
means of preventing assimilation. On the other hand, those who are
under the age of 35, and in particular those residing in Paris, have less
opportunity or less need to maintain their Israeli identity in Europe.
The older Israelis in London are also somewhat more integrated with
the proximal host and have a stronger Jewish identity than do younger
Israelis, particularly those residing in Paris. Living in Europe allows
Israelis to flourish economically without having to identify with or
belong to a cultural and social ethnic niche. The ethnic identity of
first-generation Israeli immigrants in Europe is multifaceted. While it
is primarily transnational, it is also dynamic and constantly changing
though various interactions and is, of course, susceptible to current
local and global political and economic events. For younger Israeli
immigrants, assimilation into the non-Jewish population appears to be
a possible form of identity and identification. This assimilation may be
moderated among young adults who build bridges with local Jewish
communities in tandem with their transnational formal connections
with Israel, a process that can benefit both sides. Such a process - the
reconstruction of ethnic Israeli-Jewish identity and collaborative
identification with local Jews - has the potential to strengthen and
enhance the survivability of European Jewry at large.
Date: 1997
Abstract: In many parts of the world today, ethnic identity is not merely the product of socialization, but is the result of conscious choice on the part of the individual. Nowhere is this more evident than in the countries of the former East Bloc, where sweeping political changes have removed many barriers to the expression of ethnic sentiment. The present work represents an attempt to build a generalizable model of ethnic identity construction by identifying the major influences on group conceptions of ethnic identity and describing the process by which those conceptions change over time. The primary case study focuses on the construction of ethnic identity among Polish Jews born after World War II. Conclusions are based primarily on data collected in interviews with members of that community. Traditionally, theories of ethnicity have posited a unity of beliefs, values or behaviors within an ethnic group. In contrast to traditional theories, the model proposed here focuses on major areas of conflict within groups, positing that conflict over issues deemed relevant in some degree to all members of the group is the driving force behind ethnic change. In choosing to identify, members of ethnic groups are presented with a set of issues, which are both important and controversial for the group, on which they feel obligated to take a position. The set of controversial issues relevant to a given group at a given time, the model posits, is determined by three factors: differences between cohorts arising from their formative experiences; differences between subgroups arising from conflicts between communal institutions; and differences between subgroups arising from their varied responses to input from outside groups. Whereas works on ethnicity in the field of political science have tended to focus on nationalism, or the pursuit of statehood by ethnic groups, this model treats nationalism and organized political behavior in general as a potential outgrowth of ethnicity, but not as its necessary byproduct.
Author(s): Graham, David
Date: 2018
Abstract: JPR’s report, European Jewish identity: Mosaic or monolith? An empirical assessment of eight European countries, authored by Senior Research Fellow Dr David Graham, asks whether there is such a thing as a European Jewish identity, and, if so, what it looks like.

The question of whether there is a Jewish identity that is at once common to all European Jews but also peculiar to them, has intrigued scholars of contemporary Jewry since the fall of the Berlin Wall. This study contrasts the European picture with the two major centres of world Jewry, the United States and Israel, and examines the nature and content of Jewish identity across Europe, exploring the three core pillars of belief, belonging and behaviour around which Jewish identity is built.

This research was made possible by the advent of the EU Agency for Fundamental Rights (FRA) survey in 2012 examining Jewish people’s experiences and perceptions of antisemitism across nine EU Member States: Belgium, France, Germany, Hungary, Italy, Latvia, Romania, Sweden and the UK. As well as gathering data about antisemitism, the study investigated various aspects of the Jewishness of respondents, in order to ascertain whether different types of Jews perceive and experience antisemitism differently. This study focuses on the data gathered about Jewishness, thereby enabling direct comparisons to be made for the first time across multiple European Jewish communities in a robust and comprehensive way.

The report concludes that there is no monolithic European identity, but it explores in detail the mosaic of Jewish identity in Europe, highlighting some key differences:
• In Belgium, where Jewish parents are most likely to send their children to Jewish schools, there is a unique polarisation between the observant and non-observant;
• In France, Jews exhibit the strongest feelings of being part of the Jewish People, and also have the strongest level of emotional attachment to Israel;
• Germany’s Jewish community has the largest proportion of foreign-born Jews, and, along with Hungary, is the youngest Jewish population;
• In Hungary the greatest relative weight in Jewish identity priorities is placed on 'Combating antisemitism,' and the weakest level of support for Israel is exhibited;
• In Italy, respondents are least likely to report being Jewish by birth or to have two Jewish parents;
• The Jews of Latvia are the oldest population and the most likely to be intermarried;
• The Jews of Sweden attach a very high level of importance to 'Combating antisemitism' despite being relatively unlikely to experience it, and they observe few Jewish practices;
• In the United Kingdom, Jews observe the most religious practices and appear to feel the least threatened by antisemitism. They are the most likely to be Jewish by birth and least likely to be intermarried.

According to report author, Dr David Graham: “This report represents far more than the culmination of an empirical assessment of Jewish identity. Never before has it been possible to examine Jewish identity across Europe in anything approaching a coherent and systematic way. Prior to the FRA’s survey, it was almost inconceivable that an analysis of this kind could be carried out at all. The formidable obstacles of cost, language, political and logistical complexity seemed to present impenetrable barriers to the realisation of any such dream. Yet this is exactly what has been achieved, a report made possible through an FRA initiative into furthering understanding of Jewish peoples' experience of antisemitism. It reveals a European Jewry that is more mosaic than monolith, an array of Jewish communities, each exhibiting unique Jewish personas, yet united by geography and a common cultural heritage."
Author(s): Illman, Ruth
Date: 2018
Date: 2017