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Early Modern Jewry
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This is an entirely original book that for the first time offers a sustained and persuasive argument for a distinct early modern period in Jewish history. Ruderman provides a synthetic account of the period based on a masterful command of the primary and secondary scholarship. -- David Sorkin, University of Wisconsin-Madison Ruderman's scholarship is of the highest order and shows impeccable control over a huge and diverse secondary literature. He is able to convey the nature of the historical debates over the key issues in this period with clarity and integrity, and each chapter is a model of argumentation. This book will be indispensable to anyone who studies the Jewish experience. -- Gershon Hundert, McGill University

Table of Contents

Maps x Introduction 1 Chapter One?: Jews on the Move 23 The Mobility of Europeans and Other Peoples in the Early Modern Period 24 Jewish Migration to Italy and the Ottoman Empire 26 Jewish Migration to Eastern Europe 29 Converso Migration 34 The Social Consequences of Jewish Mobility 37 Did Jewish Mobility Engender Cultural Productivity? 41 Chapter Two: Comm unal Cohesion 57 Italian Communal Developments 59 Converso Communal Organizations: Leghorn and Amsterdam 65 Jewish Communal Organization in Germanic Lands 74 The Jewish Community under Ottoman Rule 81 Jewish Self-Government in Eastern Europe 86 Some Comparative Observations 93 Chapter Three?: Knowledge Explosion 99 The Printed Book and the Creation of a Connected Jewish Culture 99 Further Consequences of the Printing of Jewish Books 103 Christian Hebraists and Their Judaic Publications 111 The Expansion of Cultural Horizons 120 Jewish Medical Students at the University 125 Chapter Four: Crisis of Rabbinic Authority 133 Locating the Beginnings of a Jewish Crisis in the Seventeenth Century 136 The Sabbatean Turmoil of the Eighteenth Century 140 Sabbateanism and the Birth of "Orthodoxy" in the Eighteenth Century 146 Sabbateanism and the Other Crises of Early Modernity: Some Tentative Conclusions 155 Chapter Five?: Mingled Identities 159 The Ambiguity of Converso Lives 160 Sabbatean Syncretism 163 The Conflicting Loyalties of Christian Hebraists 173 The Mediating Roles of Jewish Converts to Christianity 180 Jewish Christians and Christian Jews 186 Chapter Six: Toward Modernity: Some Final Thoughts 191 When Does the Early Modern Period Begin and When Does It End? 193 Early Haskalah, Early Modernity, and Haskalah Reconsidered 198 Viewing the Modern Era in the Light of the Early Modern 202 Appendix: H istoriographical Re flec tions 207 Jonathan Israel's Interpretation of Early Modern Jewish Culture 207 Jewish Historians on the Early Modern Period 214 Early Modernity in European and World Historiography 220 Acknowledgments 227 Notes 231 Bibliography of Secondary Works 287 Index 319

Promotional Information

This is an entirely original book that for the first time offers a sustained and persuasive argument for a distinct early modern period in Jewish history. Ruderman provides a synthetic account of the period based on a masterful command of the primary and secondary scholarship. -- David Sorkin, University of Wisconsin-Madison Ruderman's scholarship is of the highest order and shows impeccable control over a huge and diverse secondary literature. He is able to convey the nature of the historical debates over the key issues in this period with clarity and integrity, and each chapter is a model of argumentation. This book will be indispensable to anyone who studies the Jewish experience. -- Gershon Hundert, McGill University

About the Author

David B. Ruderman is the Joseph Meyerhoff Professor of Modern Jewish History and the Ella Darivoff Director of the Herbert D. Katz Center for Advanced Judaic Studies at the University of Pennsylvania. His many books include "Jewish Enlightenment in an English Key" and "Connecting the Covenants".

Reviews

Brave, stimulating, highly erudite, and informative. -- Moshe Rosman Jewish Review of Books Ruderman's provocative thesis marks a scholarly watershed. It reopens and complicates the question of when modern Jewish history began, and suggests that far-reaching but underappreciated trends analogous to those traced in this book have already inaugurated a postmodern era of Jewish history. -- Lawrence Grossman Forward David B. Ruderman plunges into one of the central debates in the writing of Jewish history... When we think of the history of Europe, it is in terms derived from the experience of Christians and Christianity... But does this familiar timeline apply to the history of the Jews? ... Early Modern Jewry will certainly help to shape future debates over the ways we write and interpret Jewish history. -- Adam Kirsch Tablet Magazine Ruderman's learned and fluently written book presents a thought-provoking interpretation of the period beginning with the Spanish expulsion of 1492, which set into motion the extraordinary communities of Iberian Jewry--and much else besides--and stretching forward to the onset of modernity. -- Yehudah Mirsky Jewish Ideas Daily Ruderman has given readers fascinated by Jewish history much material upon which to ponder. -- Benjamin Ivry Forward David Ruderman ... provides a masterful synthesis of the vast scholarship of the past 30 years... This book is an important addition to any university library. -- Harvey Sukenic AJL Newsletter Its thought-provoking discussion of the early modern period in Jewish history, the notes and bibliography providing additional information, and the extensive appendix discussing various historiographical interpretations of early modernity make this book indispensable for both students and teachers of early modern and modern Jewish history alike, as well as for those more generally interested in Jewish history. Ruderman's study will decisively shape future discussions about early modern Jewish history and the beginnings of modernity. ekka Voss," H-Net Reviews David Ruderman has produced an admirable synthesis of the latest research on early modem Jewish history, while offering a cogent assessment of the historiography of the term 'early modern' and of the role of Jews in European and world history between the medieval and modem eras. The clear structure and approachable writing of Early Modern Jewry make it an excellent resource. -- Gayle K. Brunelle Canadian Journal of History [T]he book greatly advances scholarship toward a more holistic, multidisciplinary approach to Jewish history during this very dynamic epoch... His work is a great introductory monograph for students and emerging scholars in early modern Jewish studies, providing an excellent foundation of knowledge to build upon for future research. -- Barry Stiefel Sixteenth Century Journal Ruderman also discusses a number of crucial works on early modern Jewish history, making his study more accessible to novice readers. His extensive bibliography may serve as a useful starting point for the reader's own exploration of early modern Jewry -- .Pnina M. Rubesh European Legacy

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