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Secularizing the Sacred

Aspects of Israeli Visual Culture

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Alec Mishory

As historical analyses of Diaspora Jewish visual culture blossom in quantity and sophistication, this book analyzes 19th-20th-century developments in Jewish Palestine and later the State of Israel. In the course of these approximately one hundred years, Zionist Israelis developed a visual corpus and artistic lexicon of Jewish-Israeli icons as an anchor for the emerging “civil religion.” Bridging internal tensions and even paradoxes, artists dynamically adopted, responded to, and adapted significant Diaspora influences for Jewish-Israeli purposes, as well as Jewish religious themes for secular goals, all in the name of creating a new state with its own paradoxes, simultaneously styled on the Enlightenment nation-state and Jewish peoplehood.
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Jewish Religious Architecture

From Biblical Israel to Modern Judaism

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Edited by Steven Fine

Jewish Religious Architecture explores ways that Jews have expressed their tradition in brick and mortar and wood, in stone and word and spirit. This volume stretches from the biblical Tabernacle to Roman Jerusalem, synagogues spanning two millenia and on to contemporary Judaism. Social historians, cultural historians, art historians and philologists have come together here to present this extraordinary architectural tradition. The multidisciplinary approach employed in Jewish Religious Architecture reveals deep continuities over time, together with the distinctly local— sometimes in surprising ways.
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Site of Amnesia: The Lost Historical Consciousness of Mizrahi Jewry

Representation of the Experience of the Jews of North Africa and the Middle East during World War II in Israeli, European and Middle Eastern Film and Television

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Yvonne Kozlovsky Golan

This study deepens our historical understanding of the North-African Jewish and Middle Eastern Jewish experience during WWII, which is often under- or mis-represented by the media in Israel, the Arab world, France, and Italy. Public, historical and sociocultural discourse is examined to clarify whether these communities are accepted by the world as "Holocaust survivors". Further, it determines the extent to which their wartime history is revealed to Israeli society in its cultural performances. Importantly, this work addresses the reasons why the Holocaust of North African Jewry is absent from Israeli and world consciousness. Finally, the study contemplates the consequences of these phenomena for Israeli society as well as in the colonial countries of France and Italy.
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Edited by Laura Whatley

A Companion to Seals in the Middle Ages is a cross-disciplinary collection of fourteen essays on medieval sigillography. It is organized thematically, and it emphasizes important, often cutting-edge, methodologies for the study of medieval seals and sealing cultures.
As the chronological, temporal and geographic scope of the essays in the volume suggests, the study of the medieval seal—its manufacture, materiality, usage, iconography, inscription, and preservation—is a rich endeavour that demands collaboration across disciplines as well as between scholars working on material from different regions and periods. It is hoped that this collection will make the study of medieval seals more accessible and will stimulate students and scholars to employ and further develop these material and methodological approaches to seals.
Contributors are Adrian Ailes, Elka Cwiertnia, Paul Dryburgh, Emir O. Filipovi, Oliver Harris, Philippa Hoskin, Ashley Jones, Andreas Lehnertz, John McEwan, Elizabeth A. New, Jonathan Shea, Caroline Simonet, Angelina A. Volkoff, and Marek L. Wójcik.
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Rachel Hachlili

The Menorah, the ancient seven-armed candelabrum, was the most important Jewish symbol both in the Land of Israel and the Diaspora. The menorah was the most important of the Temple vessels and it also came to symbolize Judaism, when it was necessary to distinguish synagogues and Jewish tombs from Christian or pagan structures. This book is a continuation of Hachlili's earlier comprehensive study, The Menorah, the Ancient Seven-armed Candelabrum: Origin, Form and Significance. Brill, 2001. It entails the compilation and study of the material of the past two decades, presenting the theme of the menorah, focusing on its development, form, meaning, significance, and symbolism in antiquity.
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The Jewish Museum

History and Memory, Identity and Art from Vienna to the Bezalel National Museum, Jerusalem

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Natalia Berger

In The Jewish Museum: History and Memory, Identity and Art from Vienna to the Bezalel National Museum, Jerusalem Natalia Berger traces the history of the Jewish museum in its various manifestations in Central Europe, notably in Vienna, Prague and Budapest, up to the establishment of the Bezalel National Museum in Jerusalem. Accordingly, the book scrutinizes collections and exhibitions and broadens our understanding of the different ways that Jewish individuals and communities sought to map their history, culture and art. It is the comparative method that sheds light on each of the museums, and on the processes that initiated the transition from collection and research to assembling a type of collection that would serve to inspire new art.
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Edited by Eran Almagor and Lisa Maurice

In Ancient Virtues and Vices in Modern Popular Culture, Eran Almagor and Lisa Maurice offer a comprehensive collection of chapters dealing with the reception of antiquity in popular media of the modern era (19th-21st centuries). These media include theatrical plays, cinematic representations, Television drama, popular newspapers or journals, poems and outdoor festivals. For the first time in Classical Reception Studies, ancient Jewish literature and imagery are included in the discussion. The focus of the volume is both the continuity and variance between ancient and modern sets of values, which appear in the new interpretations of the ancient stories, figures and protagonists.
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Joyce Block Lazarus

Geneviève Straus: a Parisian Life is the first biography in English of Geneviève Straus (1849-1926), a Parisian salon hostess and political activist. Joyce Block Lazarus explores myths surrounding Straus and offers an account of her life and accomplishments. Making use of historical materials, including previously unpublished letters, Lazarus shows that Straus was a female intellectual during an era when women were non-citizens.
Scholars have well documented the Dreyfus Affair (1894-1906), but have overlooked archival documents which spotlight Straus’s role as a political activist in the affair. In Geneviève Straus: a Parisian Life, Lazarus highlights Straus’s thirty-four-year friendship with Marcel Proust and examines her influence on Proust’s novel, In Search of Lost Time, finding echoes of Straus and her family in his masterpiece.
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Akim Volynsky

A Hidden Russian-Jewish Prophet

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Helen Tolstoy

In Akim Volynsky: A Hidden Russian-Jewish Prophet Helen Tolstoy goes far beyond the accepted image of Akim Volynsky as a controversial literary critic of the 1890s who ran the first journal of Russian Symbolists, promoted philosophic idealism and proposed the first modernist reading of Dostoevsky. This book, through the study of periodicals and archive materials, offers a new view of Volynsky as a champion of Symbolist theater, supporter of Jewish playwrights, an ardent partisan of Habima theater and finally, a theoretician of Jewish theater. Throughout his life, Volynsky was a seeker of a Jewish-Christian synthesis, both religious and moral. His grand universalist view made him the first to see the true value of leading Russian writers – his contemporaries Tolstoy and Dostoevsky.
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Edited by Amalia Ran and Moshe Morad

Winner of the Jewish Music Special Interest Group Paper Prize of 2018
Mazal Tov, Amigos! Jews and Popular Music in the Americas seeks to explore the sphere of Jews and Jewishness in the popular music arena in the Americas. It offers a wide-ranging review of new and old trends from an interdisciplinary standpoint, including history, musicology, ethnomusicology, ethnic studies, cultural studies, and even Queer studies. The contribution of Jews to the development of the music industry in the United States, Argentina, or Brazil cannot be measured on a single scale. Hence, these essays seek to explore the sphere of Jews and popular music in the Americas and their multiple significances, celebrating the contribution of Jewish musicians and Jewishness to the development of new musical genres and ideas.