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Yiddish Civilisation

  • Paperback $16.95

    Oct 31, 2006 | 400 Pages

  • Ebook $13.99

    Dec 18, 2007 | 400 Pages

Product Details

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“A highly enjoyable and surprisingly positive account of how Jewish culture helped shape European history and vice versa.” –The Sunday Telegraph

“An outstanding survey. . . . Kriwaczek tracks the origins, flowering, and destruction of this unique, vibrant, and tenacious culture with a fine mixture of pride, regret, and eloquence.” –Booklist

“Evocative and precise. . . . An enjoyable narrative that captures the intricacies of a very complicated history.”–Publishers Weekly

“Informative and very entertaining . . . conjures up and re-creates baroque images and marvelous set pieces of feverish activity, long lost towns and shtetls [as well as] wonderful pictures of lost communities of Jews.”–The Irish Times

Table Of Contents

List of Illustrations




1 Bist a Yid?
Roots schmoots!
Nostalgie de la boue

2 The Jews of Rome
A basket and a truss of hay

3 From the Mediterranean to the Baltic
As strange as a circumcised unicorn
Sennan and zippan

4 The Remaking of Western Europe
Charles’s elephant
New borders, new allegiances
Drang nach osten

5 At the Crossroads
In every castle a king
A blessing upon mieszko, king of poland

6 The New Yiddish World
The language
The literature
The religion
The scholarly tradition

7 Political Consolidation
Landowners, merchants, artisans, servants
At the jewish inn

8 The Reformation
Now a miracle happened

9 The Yiddish Renaissance
Dovid gans

10 Wide Horizons
Wealth and honour
The great divide

11 The Deluge
The cossacks
Poverty and disgrace

12 Decline . . .
Who permits the forbidden
The holy creed of edom
The famous ba’al shem tov,
May his light long shine
Oppose them strongly

13 . . . and Fall
The “jewish problem”
Words that fall on us like lashes
Shakespearean tragedy

14 A Winter Flowering

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