TOC: Aschkenas, Volume 31, Issue 2

Florian Hoppe's picture

I am pleased to announce the publication of the latest issue of Aschkenas. Zeitschrift für Geschichte und Kultur der Juden.


Aschkenas concentrates on the history and culture of Ashkenazic Jews (those living in Central, Northern, Eastern and Western Europe as well as Northern Italy), from the time when Ashkenazic Jewish culture was gradually forming in late Antiquity and the early Middle Ages up to the present, with a focus on the pre-Emancipation period. Aschkenas publishes peer-reviewed articles, essays, source editions, literature and research reports as well as review essays on a number of publications. Most articles are in German (with an English abstract), but manuscripts can also be submitted in English.


Table of Contents


Birgit Wiedl
Der Salzburger Erzbischof und seine Juden
The Archbishop of Salzburg and his Jews


This article analyzes the relationship between the Archbishops of Salzburg and the Jewish inhabitants of their territory. Unlike other prince-(arch)bishops of the Holy Roman Empire who actively promoted their Jewish communities, the Archbishops of Salzburg showed significantly less interest in their Jewish subjects and only seldomly made use of their financial capacities. Nevertheless, they claimed lordship over the Jews of their territory and defined the legal parameters under which Jewish life flourished in the archbishopric’s major towns; individual Jews and their families were given special privileges. After two major persecutions in 1349 and 1404, the latter of which took place at least with the archbishop’s consent, Archbishop Leonhard von Keutschach expelled all Jewish inhabitants in 1498, ending the medieval Jewish settlement in the archbishopric.



Christian Porzelt
Esther und ihre Töchter. Geschlechterrollen und Wirtschaftstätigkeit jüdischer Frauen in der Vormoderne
Esther and Her Daughters. Gender Roles and Economic Activity of Jewish Women in the Pre-Modern Era


This essay examines the commercial activities of Jewish women in the Franconian town of Kronach, a district seat in the northern part of the Prince-Bishopric of Bamberg, in the early modern period. It focuses on the widow Esther (c. 1645–1727), a contemporary of the famous merchant woman Glikl bas Judah Leib in Altona. Esther’s business activities, which are documented for a period of more than four decades, included the sale of household goods and textiles as well as the marketing of agrarian products. In addition, she was involved in credit transactions and pawnbroking. Numerous contacts with town dwellers and country people demonstrate her involvement in Christian economic and credit networks. As the biographies of Esther’s daughters Ella and Jüdla show, married women also played central roles within households and working communities. They not only supported their husbands, but continued to run their businesses in their absence and engaged in trade on their own accounts.



Robert Jütte
Jüdische Haarhändler – Die Geschichte eines in Vergessenheit geratenen  Gewerbes
Jewish Hair Merchants – The Story of a Forgotten Trade


Studies in cultural, religious and social history reveal that hair has diverse socio-religious and symbolic value in Jewish society and tradition. The focus of previous studies has, however, lied on issues such as specific hairstyle or the halakhic justifications for religious wig-wearing The present paper sets out to illuminate a related yet uncharted topic: the social and economic history of the wig trade in which Jews played an important role. The focus is on the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, a period marked by great tensions within the Jewish community. It was these tensions that turned the question of wig-wearing and the dynamics of supply into an issue that reflected the general transformation that Jewish society was undergoing in this period. Hair fashion is, of course, not necessarily a matter of only halakhic interest, and indeed the history of the trade with human hair also reveals new aspects of the economic history of Jews.



Louise Hecht
Zunz in Prag: Ein vergessenes Kapitel in der jüdischen Kultreform
›The City, Where He Preached Only Four Times‹: Leopold Zunz in Prague


The paper addresses an under-researched chapter in the history of the Jewish Reform movement which is at the same time a commonly overlooked period in the biography of Leopold Zunz (1794–1886), one of the founding members of Wissenschaft des Judentums. By placing his eight-month appointment as a preacher to the Reform synagogue in Prague in its socio-political and biographical contexts, the article sheds new light at Zunz’s commitment for the religious renewal of Judaism. A schematic comparison between the development of the Reform movement in the German lands and the Habsburg Monarchy, at the beginning of the nineteenth century highlights the role of state involvement into internal Jewish affairs. Finally, the analysis of Zunz’s Synagogenordnung from 1836, according to the original manuscript from the National Library of Israel, allows a re-evaluation of the (Reform) synagogue as an institution for social disciplining of its members.



Martina Bitunjac
Der Wiener Studentenverein Bar Giora und sein Einfluss auf die Entstehungsgeschichte des Zionismus im kroatischen und südosteuropäischen Raum des Habsburgerreiches
The Viennese Student Association Bar Giora and its Influence on the Genesis of Zionism in the Croatian and Southeast European Areas of the Habsburg Empire


The establishment of the Bar Giora Zionist student association at the University of Vienna in 1904 was an important factor in the development of Zionism in the territory of the former Yugoslavia. The Verein jüdischer Akademiker aus den südslavischen Ländern (Association of Jewish Alumni from the South Slavic Countries) and its committed members had great influence on the transfer of the idea of a Jewish nation-state to the South Slavic region by creating multicultural supra-regional networks, organising conferences and publishing nationally oriented journals. The young Zionists from the Balkans also faced strong criticism from assimilated Jews. This paper explores the origins of Bar Giora, its self-understanding and its impact, as well as the assimilationist challenges faced by the Zionists.



Ines Sonder
»Erez Israel from the Air 1937–38«. Zoltan Klugers Luftbilder als visuelle Quelle zur Architektur geschichte des Jischuws
»Erez Israel from the Air 1937–38«. Zoltan Klugerʼs Aerial Photographs as a Visual Source for the Architectural  History of the Yishuv


In September 1938, German-Jewish merchant, publisher and patron Salman Schocken, who emigrated to Palestine in 1934, presented an album of 40 aerial photographs of the Land of Israel as a sign of gratitude to the well-wishers on his 60th birthday the previous year. The pictures were taken by Hungarian-Jewish photographer Zoltan Kluger, who had worked in Berlin since the 1920s and became the »chief photographer« of Keren Hayesod and the Jewish National Fund after his immigration at the end of 1933. There is only little information about their collaboration on this extraordinary project and the album of which a copy has been preserved in the Archives of the National Library of Israel. »Erez Israel from the Air 1937–38«, as the album is also known, with Klugerʼs stunning aerial shots, shows a unique view of historical and biblical landscapes, the Judean Desert and the Jordan Valley, but first and foremost they are a visual record of the architectural history of the Yishuv: starting with the settlements of the First Aliya, the founding of Kibbutzim and Moshavim, the urban development of Jerusalem, Tel Aviv and Haifa, up to the Stockade and Tower settlements since the outbreak of the Arab revolt in 1936. They are presented in the following article. Readers are invited to view the whole album and the photographs at a higher resolution online here: