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Author(s): Salamensky, S. I.
Date: 2013
Author(s): Salamensky, S. I.
Date: 2014
Abstract: A “Jew-themed” restaurant provides its patrons with broad-brimmed black hats with foot-long sidecurls to wear, and the menu has no prices; patrons must bargain, or “Jew,” the staff down. A play billed as a tribute to a lost Jewish community ends in a gag: Death throws back his shroud to reveal an open-brain-pate wig, à la the horror flick Nightmare on Elm Street. In a “traditional Jewish wedding dance,” “Jewish wealth” is represented by a local luxury: vacuum-packed juice boxes. In parts of the world where Jews, once populous, have nearly vanished because of oppression, forced exile, and genocide, non-Jews now strive to re-enact what has been lost. In this essay, I will consider three general cases of what I term “Jewface” minstrelsy and

“Jewfaçade” display, in Krakow, Poland; the village of Hervás in western Spain; and Birobidzhan, capital city of Russia’s far-eastern Jewish Autonomous Region, which is known as Birobidzhan as well. Jewface-resembling the “blackface” prevalent in the United States in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries-is the practice of music, dance, theatre, and/or extra-theatrical types of performance, primarily by non-Jews, intended to convey notions of historical Jewish life and culture. Jewfaçade involves architectural and decorative constructions, again mainly by nonJews, meant to evoke ideas of the Jew in similar ways. Ruth Ellen Gruber, the team of Daniela Flesler and Adrian Pérez Melgosa, and other journalists and scholars have documented what Michael Brenner has called “Jewish culture without Jews” in Poland and Spain, as well as elsewhere in Europe (Brenner 1997: 152). However, no comparative study has been made, and no scholar has approached this topic with regard to Birobidzhan. I will provide brief overviews of Jewface and Jewfaçade activities in Krakow, Hervás, and Birobidzhan. I will then demonstrate the ways in which the notions of the figure of the Jew and of local Jewish history are performed, or acted out in these three comparative geographical contexts. These cases, as, in conclusion, I will argue, represent three very different approaches to public memory and memorialization with regard to the Jew, and perhaps in regard to troubled historical legacies more generally.
Date: 2018
Date: 2021
Author(s): Wróbel, Karolina
Abstract: Over the past three decades, a renewed interest in Jewish heritage in Poland has emerged. This phenomenon has its origins in the late 1970s and early 1980s and has since developed into a recognizable trend often described as the "Jewish revival" or "Jewish renaissance." The annual Jewish Culture Festival in Krakow is the most prominent manifestation of this movement. Every summer, Krakow is turned into a stage by performances of Klezmer music, theatre and art exhibits dealing with Jewish culture. Workshops on Jewish traditions intend to educate the participants about the century-long presence of Jewish life in Poland and Polish-Jewish co-existence. Despite its popularity in Poland, the Festival has met with criticism and skepticism internationally. The most vocal critics are members of Jewish communities across North America and Western Europe, who accuse Poles of misappropriating and misrepresenting Jewish culture. Many commentators point to the antagonistic nature of Polish-Jewish relations suggesting a lack of historical sensitivity on the part of the Poles and question the motivation and sincerity of the Jewish culture revival. This point of tension reflects the existence of two opposing narratives which have come to dominate Polish and American/Western European historical discourse respectively. This dissertation aims to dissect the root and explain the cause of these competing perspectives. To achieve this goal, this study investigates the renaissance of Jewish culture through the lens of the annual Jewish Culture Festival in Krakow. In reference to Pierre Nora's concept of the lieu de memoire, it examines the value of the Festival as a site of memory and analyzes performance in relation to the specific space and time in which it occurs. More specifically, it contests the nature, popularity and educational value of the Festival within the discussion of cultural ownership.
Author(s): Baer, Marc David
Date: 2013
Author(s): Pignatelli, Marina
Date: 2020
Abstract: Jews who remained or returned to Portugal after the Expulsion (1496) and Inquisition (1536–1821) adopted and preserved different strategies to resist total assimilation, forced conversion and antisemitism. Today, Jewish communities are small and shy. At the same time, however, many Portuguese insist on an identification with a Jewish matrix. In parallel, there is an unprecedented effort to revitalize Jewish cultural memory in the public and private spheres. This article critically discusses the broad notion of Jewish identity and its representations in present day Portugal. It gives a succinct account of its existing Jewish communities, their power interrelationships and the categorizations used to label who is identified as a Jew. The article examines the making of cultural Jewish heritage and its paradoxes, considering the variety of agents involved and their agendas. While it will be argued that Jewish identity is certainly multidimensional, there are, at the same time, several contemporary native Jewish tangible and intangible cultural traces that are being neglected in the systematization process of Jewish memory and traditions in Portugal. Given the homogenizing tendencies of globalization and the particularizing local reactions to such trends, the present article describes and reflects on how the Jewish past in Portugal is intertwined with the present, and how the plural ways of perceiving Jewish identity and its cultural manifestations can be understood in a glocal frame, in terms of both discursive and material Jewish traditions. Based on a qualitative approach and a collaborative ethnographic method, the article analyzes how the Portuguese matrix of Jewish culture remains part of the Sepharad imaginary while it is subjected to the constraints of time and space.
Author(s): Kucia, Marek
Date: 2016
Abstract: Drawing upon developments in cultural and social memory studies and Europeanization theory, this article examines the Europeanization of Holocaust memory understood as the process of construction, institutionalization, and diffusion of beliefs regarding the Holocaust and norms and rules regarding Holocaust remembrance and education at a transnational, European level since the 1990s and their incorporation in the countries of post-communist Eastern Europe, which is also the area where the Holocaust largely took place. The article identifies the transnational agents of the Europeanization of Holocaust memory—the European Union’s parliament, the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance, the Council of Europe, the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe, and its Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights, as well as the United Nations. It analyzes chronologically the key Holocaust-related activities and documents of these agents, highlighting East European countries’ varied and changing position towards them. It examines synchronically the outcome of the Europeanization of Holocaust memory by these transnational agents—a European memory of the Holocaust—identifying its key components, discussing the main aspects, and illustrating the impact of this process and outcome upon the memory of the Holocaust in the East European countries. The article argues that the Europeanization of Holocaust memory has significantly contributed to the development of Holocaust memory in Eastern Europe, although other agents and processes were also involved.
Author(s): Cârstocea, Raul
Date: 2021
Author(s): Paolo, Mendes Pinto
Date: 2020
Author(s): Sarri Krantz, Anna
Date: 2018
Abstract: Förintelsen är en historisk händelse som lever vidare i samtidens medvetande i form av minnesmonument och museala minnesutställningar och processas av forskningsinstitutioner och myndigheter. Bland överlevandefamiljerna lever minnet kvar och nu har några av deras barnbarn, den Tredje generationens överlevande, tagit på sig att förvalta minnet. Samtidigt florerar antisemitismen i det svensk samhället vilket formar och påverkar den judiska gruppen och barnbarnen. Den socialantropologiska studien som har genomförts kan visa att detta påverkar deras identitet. Syftet med studien är att undersöka den tredje generationens identitetskonstruktion och hur den formas av minnet av Förintelsen, samtida antisemitism samt de judiska institutionerna. I den etnografiska undersökningen som primärt har centrerats kring intervjuer och observationer framkom att det finns en uttalad vilja att minnas Förintelsen. Vissa påpekar vikten av att minnas i ett privat sammanhang, inom familjen, medan andra tycker att de mer offentliga minnesstunderna uppfyller behovet. Samtidigt lever barnbarnen i en tid med en manifest och latent antisemitism vilket formar både deras tillvaro och självbiografi. Några av forskningsdeltagarna har blivit utsatta för regelrätta antisemitiska påhopp medan andra har strategier för att undgå att synliggöra sin judiska identitet. Identiteten formas dock inte bara av detta utan också av den judiska etniska samhörigheten, de judiska institutionerna, det judiska kalendariet och kulturella och sociala riktlinjer. I studiens slutsatser kan det konstateras att den Tredje generationen överlevandes minnesbearbetning av Förintelsen baseras i mångt och mycket på en generationella minnesöverföring som har pågått under forskningsdeltagarnas liv då de har samtalet med överlevandegenerationen. Empirin visar också att de bär på förhållningssätt och strategier kring hur de hanterar en samtida antisemitism i kombination med att de bär på de överlevandes berättelser om den tyska, extrema formen. Detta tillsammans utgör en av grunderna till identiteten. Empirin visar också att den tredje generationen väljer att leva ett judiskt liv, inom den Judiska församlingens ramar, baserat på individuella val och ställningstaganden.
Date: 2016
Abstract: This research contributes to the understanding of the process of reconstructing the memory of Jews in contemporary Poland. Focusing on a case study of a town in southern Poland, Mszana Dolna, the study analyses how Jewish/non-Jewish relations and the history of the Jews of the town are remembered by the current inhabitants of Mszana, as well as by Holocaust survivors and their families. The research is based on an interdisciplinary approach to the subject of memory, using in depth oral history interviews, archival and other written materials, as well as participant observation as sources of analysed data. The study concentrates on the memory of the life in Mszana before, during and after the war in terms of the coexistence of two communities, Jewish and non-Jewish ones. Focusing mainly on the annual commemoration of the shooting of the Jews of Mszana in August 1942 by non-Jewish members of the community and their participation in the educational programmes, the research elucidates the process of regaining the Jewish heritage of the town by non-Jewish inhabitants and incorporating it into the past of the community of Mszana. Identifying the variety of levels of interactions between Jews and non-Jews before the war, it argues that the interrupted coexistence of both groups in Mszana resulted in the void which remained after the destroyed Jewish community. The memory of Jews found its place in the oral history for several decades. Through examining the forms of remembrance of the Jews in Mszana, this study attempts to illustrate the transition of the memory of Jews from private sphere of life to the public discourse on the Jewish inheritance of the town.
Editor(s): Белова, O. B.
Date: 2019
Abstract: Отталкиваясь от распространенных в антисионистской кампании обвинений евреев-эмигрантов и отказников в меркантильности и потребительстве, статья рассматривает вещественный мир и его осмысление в советском и еврейском нарративах эмиграции, сосредотачиваясь на трех ситуациях: иммиграция вещей, эмиграция вещей и вещь как альтернатива эмиграции. Отмечая предубеждение против материального как традиционную установку мемуаристов, причисляющих себя к интеллигенции, автор тем не менее обнаруживает несколько категорий вещей, регулярно упоминаемых в разнообразных рассказах о своей и чужой эмиграции, и исследует то, как эти вещи проблематизируются и социализируются, превращаясь из
машинально используемых предметов в «социальные объекты», наделенные в антагонистичных нарративах различным, иногда противоположным, значением.