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Date: 2021
Abstract: As soon as the seriousness of the COVID-19 pandemic became evident, concern began to be expressed in the Jewish community about how its effects might damage aspects of Jewish life. Our July 2020 survey of Jews across the UK was designed to investigate some of these effects and bring some data into policy discussion about the future of the community.

Part of that discussion involves community income, and specifically whether Jews will feel able to donate to charities in the ways they have previously, or if they will continue to pay membership fees to synagogues or make voluntary contributions to cover the Jewish studies programmes, security and other supplementary activities in Jewish schools.

This paper looks at these issues first by examining respondents’ giving behaviours in 2019, and comparing them to their actual or expected behaviours during the first few months of the pandemic. It finds that, as of July 2020, its effects were found to be rather limited – while charitable giving, synagogue membership fees and voluntary contributions to schools were all expected to take a hit, a strong majority indicated no change in their giving behaviour at this time. Moreover, there are some indications that a shift has taken place in people’s tendency towards giving to Jewish charities over general ones. Whether this is part of a longer-term trend or simply a response to the pandemic is unclear.

The study then investigates those who said they were planning to make a ‘negative switch’ in their giving behaviour, to explore the extent to which that change was due to economic factors caused by the pandemic, or two alternative possibilities: their economic situation prior to it, or the strength/weakness of their Jewish identity.

It finds that changes in behaviour are heavily influenced by the economic impact of the pandemic, particularly with respect to synagogue membership fees, but that Jewish identity also plays a part, most acutely in relation to making voluntary contributions to schools.

Date: 2020
Abstract: Germany’s acceptance of its direct responsibility for the Holocaust has strengthened its relationship with Israel and has led to a deep commitment to combat antisemitism and rebuild Jewish life in Germany. As we draw close to a time when there will be no more firsthand experience of the horrors of the Holocaust, there is great concern about what will happen when German responsibility turns into history. Will the present taboo against open antisemitism be lifted as collective memory fades? There are alarming signs of the rise of the far right, which includes blatantly antisemitic elements, already visible in public discourse. But it is mainly the radicalization of the otherwise moderate Muslim population of Germany and the entry of almost a million refugees since 2015 from Syria, Iraq, and Afghanistan that appears to make German society less tolerant and somewhat less inhibited about articulating xenophobic attitudes. The evidence is unmistakable—overt antisemitism is dramatically increasing once more.

The Future of the German-Jewish Past deals with the formidable challenges created by these developments. It is conceptualized to offer a variety of perspectives and views on the question of the future of the German-Jewish past. The volume addresses topics such as antisemitism, Holocaust memory, historiography, and political issues relating to the future relationship between Jews, Israel, and Germany. While the central focus of this volume is Germany, the implications go beyond the German-Jewish experience and relate to some of the broader challenges facing modern societies today.
Date: 2020
Abstract: Yiddish was the everyday language spoken by most Central and East European Jews during the last millennium. As a result of the extreme loss of speakers during the Holocaust, subsequent geographic dispersal, and lack of institutional support, Yiddish is now an endangered language. Yet it continues to be a native and daily language for Haredi (strictly Orthodox) Jews, who live in close-knit communities worldwide. We have conducted the first study of the linguistic characteristics of the Yiddish spoken in the community in London’s Stamford Hill. While Krogh (in: Aptroot, Aptroot et al. (eds.) Leket: Yiddish studies today, Düsseldorf University Press, Düsseldorf, pp 483–506, 2012), Assouline (in: Aptroot, Hansen (eds.) Yiddish language structures, De Gruyter Mouton, Berlin, pp 39–62, 2014), and Sadock and Masor (J Jew Lang 6(1):89–110, 2018), investigating other Hasidic Yiddish-speaking communities, observe what they describe as morphological syncretism, in this paper we defend the claim that present-day Stamford Hill Hasidic Yiddish lacks morphological case and gender completely. We demonstrate that loss of morphological case and gender is the result of substantial language change over the course of two generations: while the case and gender system of the spoken medium was already beginning to undergo morphological syncretism and show some variation prior to World War II, case and gender distinctions were clearly present in the mental grammar of both Hasidic and non-Hasidic speakers of the relevant Yiddish dialects at that stage. We conclude the paper by identifying some of the language-internal, sociolinguistic and historical factors that have contributed to such rapid and pervasive language change, and compare the developments in Stamford Hill Hasidic Yiddish to those of minority German dialects in North America.
Author(s): Kahn-Harris, Keith
Date: 2020
Abstract: Since 2014, JPR's European Jewish Research Archive (EJRA) has consolidated social research on post-1990 European Jewish populations within one single, freely available, online resource. EJRA is designed to be a service to community leaders, policymakers and researchers, as well as a resource to help inform the European Jewish research agenda going forward.

Drawing on an innovative methodology, this report presents a detailed statistical analysis of EJRA's holdings. Through this analysis, we are able to pinpoint specific strengths and weaknesses in social research coverage of particular issues in particular countries.

The report finds a clear increase in the research coverage of European Jewish populations since 1990. The amount of coverage in each country is broadly in line with the size of each country’s Jewish population. The majority of the research is produced by researchers whose work is not confined to this field, with a small ‘core' of committed Jewishly-focused researchers. Academia provides the primary base for researchers, but there has been a significant increase in recent years in research reports produced by non-academic institutions, particularly those concerned with monitoring antisemitism.

Approximately 20% of EJRA items concern antisemitism and this proportion has more than trebled since 1990. Research on ‘living’ Jewish communities - as opposed to research on antisemitism and Holocaust remembrance - is far less developed in countries with small Jewish populations. At 8% of the collection, Jewish education appears to be underdeveloped in all European countries with the exception of the UK.

Drawing on the research findings, the report goes on to raise questions regarding possible strategic priorities for European Jewish research for discussion by researchers and organisations that sponsor research. In particular, we ask how and whether research across Europe could be better coordinated and what countries and topics require further support to develop a stronger research infrastructure.
Date: 2019
Abstract: Mit dem im Dezember 2019 geschlossenen Staatsvertrag zwischen der Bundesrepublik Deutschland und dem Zentralrat der Juden in Deutschland zur Einrichtung eines Militärrabbinats in der Bundeswehr kommen auf dieses vielerlei Aufgaben zu: neben der seelsorgerlichen Betreuung der jüdischen Bundeswehrangehörigen etwa die Vermittlung ethischer Orientierungen oder die Sensibilisierung gegenüber unterschiedlichen Ausdrucksformen des Antisemitismus. Während die Bundeswehr zunehmend auch für junge Juden und Jüdinnen als Arbeitgeber attraktiv wird, ist die Aufnahme von Rabbinern und Rabbinerinnen ein weiteres Zeichen für die Verankerung der jüdischen Gemeinschaft in der Gesellschaft.
Die Beiträge befassen sich sowohl mit den historischen Aufgaben der Institution „Militärrabbinat“ als auch mit den heutigen Erwartungen an die Militärseelsorge in einer modernen und im westlichen Bündnis verankerten Armee. Es werden die Rahmenbedingungen für ein umfassendes Engagement von jüdischen Militärgeistlichen skizziert, das den demokratischen, pluralen und liberalen Charakter der Bundeswehr stärken kann.

Mit Beiträgen von: Josef Schuster | Daniel Botmann | Mark Dainow | Ursula von der Leyen | Joachim Rühle | Rainer L. Glatz | Hans-Peter Bartels | Wolfgang Hellmich | Karl-Heinz Brunner | Hermann Gröhe | Reinhold Bartmann | Sigurd Rink | Menachem Sebbag | Gérald Rosenfeld | Michael Wolffsohn | Zsolt Balla | Boris Ronis | Thomas Sohst | Angelika Dörfler-Dierken | Sabine Hank und Hermann Simon

Herausgegeben von Daniel Botmann und Doron Kiesel für den Zentralrat der Juden in Deutschland
Date: 2020
Abstract: This study, the first to assess mortality among Jews around the world during the COVID-19 crisis, draws on data from a wide variety of sources to understand the extent to which Jews were affected by coronavirus in different parts of the world during the first wave of the pandemic, March to May 2020.

The first section describes the methods of quantification of COVID-19 mortality, and explains why measuring it using the excess mortality method is the most effective way to understand how Jewish communities have been affected. The second section presents data on Jewish mortality during the first wave of the COVID-19 epidemic, drawing particularly on data provided to JPR by Jewish burial societies in communities all over the world. It does so in a comparative perspective, setting the data on Jews alongside the data on non-Jews, to explore both the extent to which Jews have been affected by the COVID-19 epidemic, and how the Jewish experience with COVID-19 compares to the experience of non-Jewish populations.

The immediate impression is that there is not a single ‘Jewish pattern’ that is observable everywhere, and, with respect to the presence of excess mortality, Jewish communities, by and large, followed the populations surrounding them.

The report cautions against speculation about why Jews were disproportionately affected in some places, but rule out two candidate explanations: that Jewish populations with particularly elderly age profiles were hardest hit, or that Jews have been badly affected due to any underlying health issue common among them. They consider the possibility that Jewish lifestyle effects (e.g. above average size families, convening in large groups for Jewish rituals and holidays), may have been an important factor in certain instances, noting that these are unambiguous risk factors in the context of communicable diseases. Whilst they suggest that the spread of the virus among Jews “may have been enhanced by intense social contact,” they argue that without accurate quantification, this explanation for elevated mortality in certain places remains unproven.

The report also includes a strongly worded preface from Hebrew University Professor Sergio DellaPergola, the Chair of the JPR European Jewish Demography Unit, and the world’s leading expert in Jewish demography. In it, he stresses the importance of systematically testing representative samples of the population at the national and local levels, and, in Jewish community contexts, of routinely gathering Jewish population vital statistics. He states: “If there is one lesson for Jewish community research that emerges out of this crisis it is that the routine gathering of vital statistics – the monitoring of deaths, as well as births, marriages, divorces, conversions, immigrants and emigrants – is one of the fundamental responsibilities community bodies must take.”
Author(s): Jong-min, Jeong
Date: 2020
Date: 2017
Abstract: Η μακρόχρονη ελληνο-εβραϊκή παρουσία στην Ελλάδα παρακολουθεί τις πολιτικές και κοινωνικές αλλαγές που επισυμβαίνουν στην ελληνική κοινωνία, η οποία βαθμιαία εκκοσμικεύεται και εκσυγχρονίζεται. Εξετάζοντας την περίπτωση της ελληνο-ισραηλιτικής παρουσίας, βάση οργάνωσης των Ισραηλιτικών Κοινοτήτων είναι η κοινότητα (ένας κοσμικός θεσμός) και όχι η θρησκεία (ο θρησκευτικός θεσμός), κατά συνέπεια η ταυτότητα των σύγχρονων Ελληνίδων Εβραίων γυναικών παρουσιάζεται εκμοντερνισμένη. Και αυτό, επειδή αφενός ο θρησκευτικός προσδιορισμός έχει λάβει περισσότερο πολιτιστική σημασία και αφετέρου, διότι οι γυναικείοι ρόλοι διαδραματίζονται εντός και εκτός του εβραϊκού περιβάλλοντος, αφού οι δρώντες άνθρωποι περιδιαβαίνουν τόσο εντός των ιουδαϊκών ορίων, όσο και εντός της εκκοσμικευμένης ελληνικής κοινωνίας.

Στο πλαίσιο της μοντέρνας αυτής πραγματικότητας, ο ρόλος των γυναικών κινείται ανάμεσα στην παράδοση και στη νεωτερικότητα, εφόσον τα γυναικεία υποκείμενα από τη μία πλευρά αποδέχονται την πλήρη ενσωμάτωσή τους στην κοσμική ελληνική κοινωνία, και από την άλλη πλευρά θεωρούνται άτυποι φορείς διατήρησης της ιδιαίτερης παραδοσιακής εβραϊκής τους ταυτότητας. Στόχος της παρούσας εισήγησης, είναι να διερευνήσει τον τρόπο με τον οποίο οι Εβραίες γυναίκες στην Ελλάδα διαχειρίζονται την παραδοσιακή και ηθική πλευρά της ταυτότητάς τους, σε πλήρη συνάρτηση με το εκκοσμικευμένο ελληνικό πλαίσιο.
Date: 2020
Author(s): Jong-min, Jeong
Date: 2017
Abstract: What have those living with dementia lost? If they have lost aspects of their mind and self, who are they now? Are they 'normal'? Prevailing medical, therapeutic and sociopsychoanalytic interventions and studies on dementia, largely influenced by Tom Kitwood's person-centred approach, have focused mainly on revealing and evaluating the remaining intact bodily abilities and functions beyond loss. In contrast to this predominant understanding of dementia, my decade-long involvement in a Jewish Care Home as a volunteer and researcher has raised ontological, epistemological and practical critiques, acknowledging that we are never beyond loss but always alongside it, and that we simply do not know how to dwell well with it. Although the expressive and performative words, gestures and behaviours of those with dementia are often regarded as inarticulate, repetitive and nonsensical, these are the lived worlds of dementia that those affected feel, experience and live through, whilst continuously making relations and familiarising themselves with people, things, and their surroundings. This demands a paradigm shift in the ontological, epistemological and practical horizon within the study of dementia. Critically developing Canguilhem's notion of the normal and the abnormal, Ingold's dwelling perspective and Deleuze's concept of becoming, I redefine dementia not as a fixed mode of being but as a continuous process of becoming-dementia through an attentive engagement with one's immediate surroundings. In more detail, this study explores the ways in which people challenge the taken-for-granted concepts of loss and abnormality in five different dementia contexts: ethics, repetition, time, agency and emplacement. By rejecting medical preconceptions or categorisations, this study focuses on uncovering what loss does in everyday life rather than asking what loss means or what people lose. In particular, this study emphasises bodily movement, sensory perception and affect, not because of the language deterioration during dementia trajectories but because of a new way of understanding and new reality that those affected practise in daily life. Consequently, this study illustrates the immanent potential of the anthropological view for thinking and dwelling with those living with dementia alongside their limits and implications. This study is thus an autobiographical ethnographic testimony of my past decade living, learning, volunteering, studying and most importantly co-dwelling with those living with dementia. This is a collaborative co-production created with those involved, as without the participation of those affected and the co-presence of significant others, my work could not be done. Accordingly, there is neither a beginning nor end to this study, but a moving forward and generating dementia becoming as the lives of those affected and those who care for them unfold.
Date: 2020
Abstract: JPR’s COVID-19 survey looks at how Jews have been impacted by the pandemic in terms of their health, jobs, finances, relationships and Jewish lives. The findings are being shared in a series of short reports looking at key policy issues, and this one focuses on the issue of how comfortable Jews feel about attending Jewish activities and events in person.

Drawing on survey responses from July 2020, it finds that whilst Jews situate themselves across the full length of the ‘comfort scale’ (running from very comfortable to very uncomfortable), there is a clear leaning towards the uncomfortable end.

Unsurprisingly, those who are uncomfortable are likely to be in older age bands and/or suffering from health conditions that make them particularly vulnerable to the virus. Similarly, those who have had the virus and continue to suffer from secondary symptoms (i.e. ‘Long COVID’) also tend to be uncomfortable about attending events in person.

However, there are some interesting exceptions. The most elderly appear to feel more comfortable than average, and the youngest age bands (those aged 16-24) feel more uncomfortable than average. Those who have had COVID-19 and recovered feel more comfortable than those who have not. And those who have experienced job losses, or have been furloughed, are rather less comfortable than those whose working loves have remained reasonably stable.

It is also very striking to see that, denominationally, the Strictly Orthodox feel most comfortable about attending in-person events, whereas non-synagogue members feel most uncomfortable. Members of other ‘mainstream’ denominations cluster together in between. However, people’s level of religiosity is actually a slightly better predictor than denomination of how comfortable they feel about attending community activities or events in person – those with strong religiosity are most likely to feel comfortable, and those with weak religiosity most likely to feel uncomfortable.

Perhaps most interestingly, there is an important relationship between how comfortable people feel about attending community activities and events in person, and their general state of mental health. Those showing signs of psychological distress feel notably less comfortable than others.

Brief details about the methodology used in the survey are contained in the report. A more detailed methodological is being prepared and will be available shortly.
Author(s): Staetsky, Daniel
Date: 2020
Abstract: Since the earliest days of the coronavirus outbreak in the UK, concerns have been expressed that Jews have been disproportionately affected, with mortality levels among them abnormally high. Initial hypotheses arguing that this could largely be explained by geographical and age factors were both proven and challenged by a June 2020 paper published by the Office for National Statistics. It showed that Jews were more likely to be affected because of their above average age profile and where they tend to live (London and other urban centres), but that even after accounting for these and other socio-demographic variables, they were still found to be disproportionately vulnerable.

This short paper draws on existing evidence to investigate why this might be the case. In particular, it explores whether the long-established above average health profile of Jews in the UK has shifted in such a way as to result in elevated levels of mortality from COVID-19, and whether behavioural factors – particularly in the most Orthodox parts of the community – affect the numbers in any significant way. In brief, it finds that there has been no such change in the fundamental health status of British Jews, and that regardless of any specific issues within haredi communities, the vast majority of COVID-19 related deaths among Jews have occurred in the mainstream, non-haredi sector.

Its key conclusions are as follows:
1) Even though Jewish mortality from COVID-19 is high as it is for other Black, Asian and minority ethnic groups, Jews are a completely different case and should be analysed and understood as such;
2) The high mortality levels found among Jews is not caused in any significant way by any particular developments occurring in the strictly Orthodox (haredi) population;
3) Elevated mortality among Jews may in part be due to the interconnected and contact-rich social and religious lives that Jews have, but further analysis is required to confirm this.
Author(s): Birnbaum, Pierre
Date: 2000
Author(s): Burke, Shani
Date: 2018
Date: 2020
Abstract: Growing up Jewish in Poland presents the findings of a study about the developmental trajectories of 17 children and adolescents from 14 families living in Poland who attended the Lauder-JDC International Jewish Youth Camp Szarvas (Hungary) for the first time at the time of the study (2015-2018). Resorting to a longitudinal analysis, the present study aims to examine what happens, over a period of three years, to a group of Jewish boys and girls that have experienced a Jewish summer camp for the first time in summer 2015. The study focused on the role that the summer camp itself plays in shaping a proactive Jewish life but also analyzed more globally other aspects that influence Jewish participation. What are the main factors that affect Jewish participation both on the kid’s and on the parents’ perspective? What are the possible “Jewish” trajectories of 13-to-16-year-old teenagers in Central Eastern Europe? Do they keep connected with Jewish life? If yes, how? What’s their scale of values? What are their priorities, their hopes, and their perceived future as they make their way from teenagehood to young adults?

The main methodological feature of this study lies in it being a qualitative, longitudinal, observational cohort study. In contrast to most studies that explore development retrospectively, this study involved interviewing first-time Szarvas campers and their families over a longer period, with up to three consecutive interviews per family over a period of three years. To our knowledge, this research experience is unique in Jewish Europe.
Author(s): Verschik, Anna
Date: 2020
Abstract: Aims and Objectives/Purposes/Research Questions:
Studies on incomplete first language(L1) acquisition emphasize restricted input, the low prestige of heritage/immigrant/minority lan-guages, and age of acquisition as significant factors contributing to changes in L1. However, it is notalways clear whether it is possible to distinguish results of incomplete acquisition and contact-induced language change. This article deals with two Yiddish–Lithuanian bilinguals who acquiredboth languages at home (recorded in 2010 and 2011). The focus of the article is the absence of theYiddish past tense auxiliary in both informants and the replacement of Yiddish discourse-pragmaticwords by their Lithuanian or English equivalents in the speech of the second informant.
Design/Methodology/Approach:
Qualitative analysis of the speech of two Yiddish–Lithuanianbilinguals.
Data and Analysis:
Two sets of recordings analyzed for the past tense use and other featuresmentioned in Yiddish attrition studies.
Findings/Conclusions:
Restricted input is to be considered as a factor inany case. However, it isargued that phenomena reported in the heritage language literature are often the same as in thecontact linguistic literature: impact on non-core morphosyntax, prosody, and word order areusually mentioned as primary candidates of contact-induced structural change. Based on purelylinguistic phenomena, it is not possible to distinguish between the results of acquisition under theconditions of limited input and in other contact situations where limited input is not necessarily thecase. Many features of the informants’ Yiddish are a result of Lithuanian impact.
Originality:
Yiddish–Lithuanian early bilingualism is extremely rare nowadays. The data andanalysis contribute to a general understanding of the interplay between contact-induced languagechange and limited input.
Significance/Implications:
Unlike what is often presumed, it is not always possible to makecomparisons to monolinguals or balanced bilinguals because monolingual speakers of Yiddish donot exist
Author(s): Potel, Jean-Yves
Date: 2009