Jews and Diaspora Nationalism

Writings on Jewish Peoplehood in Europe and the United States

Edited by Simon Rabinovitch

Jews and Diaspora Nationalism

Edited by Simon Rabinovitch

Distributed for Brandeis University Press

296 pages | 6 x 9
Paper $29.95 ISBN: 9781584657620 Published December 2012
Cloth $85.00 ISBN: 9781584657613 Published December 2012
The question of how to preserve, construct or transform Jewish peoplehood consumed Jewish intellectuals in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. Despite a rich array of writing from Jewish nationalists, liberals, and socialists about the vitality of Jewish existence in the diaspora, the key works have never been collected in a single volume, and few reliable English translations exist. This anthology brings together a variety of thinkers who offered competing visions of peoplehood within the established and developing Jewish diaspora centers of Europe and America. Writing in Russian, Yiddish, Hebrew, French, and English, these Jewish intellectuals sought to recast Jewish existence, whether within multiethnic empires, liberal democracies, or socialist forms of government, in national terms. Volume editor Simon Rabinovitch provides an introductory essay, as well as short introductions and annotations to each document that contextualize and make accessible this wealth of primary sources for scholars and students.
Contents
Foreword • Preface and Acknowledgments • Diaspora, Nation, and Messiah: An Introductory Essay, Simon Rabinovitch • Part I. From Haskala to National Renaissance • “The Eternal People,” Perets Smolenskin • “Jews as a Spiritual (Cultural-Historical) Nation among Political Nations,” Simon Dubnov • “The Jewish Renaissance Movement” and “Jewish Autonomy,” Nathan Birnbaum • “Paths That Lead Away from Yidishkayt,” I. L. Peretz • Part II. Socialism and the Question of Jewish Peoplehood • “A Jew to Jews” and “Why Only Yiddish?” Chaim Zhitlowsky • “The Worldwide Jewish Nation,” Vladimir Davidovich Medem • “Jewish Autonomy Yesterday and Today,” Jacob Lestschinsky • “The Founding Tasks of the Kultur-Lige” and “The Kultur-Lige,” The Kultur-Lige • Part III. Preservation and Reconstruction in the Republics • “Democracy Versus the Melting-Pot: A Study of American Nationality,” Horace M. Kallen • “The Future of Judaism,” Mordecai M. Kaplan • “A Basis for Jewish Consciousness,” René Hirschler • “What Is Jewish Tradition?” Avrom Golomb • “Is America Exile or Home? We Must Begin to Build for Permanence,” Israel Knox • Epilogue • “Jerusalem and Babylon,” Simon Rawidowicz • Suggestions for Further Reading • Translation Credits • Index
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