Linguistic, cultural and history-related studies on jews in finland: a look into the scholarship in the twenty-first century
Topics: Jewish Community, Jewish History, Jewish Studies, Bibliography and Literature Reviews, Main Topic: Culture and Heritage
Abstract: There has been a significant growth in volume and disciplines working on Jewish history and culture in Finland for the past fifteen years, yet no systematic overview of scholarly efforts have been available. This article aims to fill this gap. Our focus is on the disciplines of linguistics, cultural studies and history. Our overview covers monographs and articles that have appeared in academic publications since 2000, with a focus on Finland. Consequently we have left out Finnish research on Jews in other parts of the globe from our review. About half of the works introduced in this article have been published in Finnish and will now be briefly introduced to a wider Nordic scholarly community. The article consists of four parts. First we discuss Jewish studies and social history pursued in Finland. We then discuss studies focusing on antisemitism in Finland. The third part introduces the relevant literature on Finland’s role in the Second World War and its responsibility towards the conflict’s Jewish refugees and prisoners of war, after which studies on Finnish history culture and memory politics are presented. The final part presents biographies and general studies about the Jewish community in Finland.
Topics: Interviews, Oral History and Biography, Bibliography and Literature Reviews, Jewish Identity, Main Topic: Identity and Community
Abstract: This absorbing book of interviews takes one to the heart of modern German Jewish history. Of the eleven German Jews interviewed, four are from West Berlin, and seven are from East Berlin. The interviews provide an exceptionally varied and intimate portrait of Jewish experience in twentieth-century Germany. There are first-hand accounts of the Weimar Republic, the Nazi era, the Holocaust, and the divided Germany of the Cold War era. There are also vivid descriptions of the new united Germany, with its alarming resurgence of xenophobia and anti-Semitism. Some of the men and women interviewed affirm their dual German and Jewish identities with vigor. There is the West Berliner, for instance, who proclaims, "I am a German Jew. I want to live here." Others describe the impossibility of being both German and Jewish: "I don't have anything in common with the whole German people." Many confess to profound ambivalence, such as the East Berliner who feels that he is neither a native nor a foreigner in Germany: "If someone asks me, 'Who are you?' then I can only say, 'I am a fish out of water.'" Uncertain, angry, resolute, anguished-the diverse testimonies of these people provide startling evidence that "the history of German Jews is not over
Topics: Demography, Bibliography and Literature Reviews, Main Topic: Demography and Migration, Censuses, Aliyah, Migration, Soviet Jewry
Abstract: The article shows that demographic study of the Jews in the Former Soviet Union has a long and well established tradition based on the very rich amount of data: i.e., vital and migration statistics, and census results. The analysis started from an overview of the Tsarist and Soviet statistical legacies. However, most of the attention is focused on findings of the last quarter century. The study examines both the role of the Soviet internal passport which, because it listed ethnicity, was the basis for Jewish statistics, and the consequences of the elimination of compulsory ethnic identification in the post-Soviet Slavic countries.