Rural and Urban Jewries between Tradition and Modernity

Carsten Schapkow's picture
March 14, 2021 to March 15, 2021
Subject Fields: 
Jewish History / Studies, Rural History / Studies, Urban History / Studies

The dichotomy of ‘tradition’ and ‘modernity’ characterizes our image of Jewish history and culture to this day. The dualism of “land equals stagnation” and “city equals modernization” is a common scholarly pattern that needs to be questi-oned. The relationship between city and countryside has mostly been seen as a one-way street and as an “either/or”, either city or country. This raises the question: is this dichotomy tenable in light of recent research on transformation processes? What happened in-between city and countryside and in movements that headed in both directions? How are categories like “city” and “countryside” complicated by connections and transfers of persons, texts, objects, ideas, and institutions? This interdisciplinary international workshop focuses on the phenomenon of rural Jewries in their relationships to urban ones in modern times. The focus is on Central Europe (esp. the German-speaking lands) as well as Eastern Europe.


Sunday, March 14, 2021

13:00 (plenum): Welcome, Concept of the Workshop, Introduction

Rebekka Denz, Carsten Schapkow, and Michael K. Schulz

13:30 (2 groups): Get Together – Work Together

Chairs: Cornelia Aust, and Frank Jacob

14:45: Break

15:15 (plenum): Self Introduction

16:00: Break

16:15 (plenum): Invited Lecture

Cornelia Aust: Jewish Rural and Urban Spaces: A Few Conceptual Considerations

17:15: Break

17:15 – 20:00 (plenum, and small groups): Session 1 (with break)

Migration and Transnationality – Chair: Frank Jacob

Felicitas Remer: City and Country as Sites of Modernization and Nation-Building: Urban and Rural Settlement in the Debates of German-Speaking Zionists, c. 1890-1939

Shai Abadi: The 'Old' Rural Jew in Hebrew Revival Literature

Max Lazar: “New People in the Old Gemeinde”: Rural Jewish Migration to Frankfurt am Main, 1933-1941

Discussion and a joint reading seminar


Monday, March 15, 2021

13:00 (plenum, and small groups): Session 2 (with break)

Country and City: Modernity and Tradition -- Chair: Cornelia Aust

Monika Müller: Country Jews in the Cities? – On the Importance of Country and City in the Jewish History of Pfalz-Neuburg

Moritz Bauerfeind: Franconian Reform Rabbis as Conciliators and Troublemakers

Maja Hultman: The Modern Jewish Stockholmer as both City Jew and Country Jew

Ekaterina Oleshkevich: Rural and Urban Jewish Childhoods in the Russian Pale of Settlement: What are the Differences?

Discussion and a joint reading seminar

16:15: Break

16:45 (plenum, and small groups): Joint reading seminar (with break)

Rural and Urban Jewries Between Tradition and Modernity – Chair: Eva Haverkamp-Rott, and Martha Stellmacher 

18:30 – 19:00: Resume: Rebekka Denz, Carsten Schapkow, and Michael K. Schulz