By Steven T. Katz
Dating from the 16th century, there have been 1000s of shtetls—Jewish settlements—in jap Europe that have been domestic to a wide and compact inhabitants that differed from their gentile, as a rule peasant acquaintances in faith, career, language, and tradition. The shtetls have been diversified in vital respects from past forms of Jewish settlements within the Diaspora in that Jews had hardly shaped a majority within the cities during which they lived. This was once now not actual of the shtetl, the place Jews occasionally comprised eighty% or extra of the inhabitants. whereas the shtetl started to decline in the course of the process the 19th century, it was once the Holocaust which ultimately destroyed it.
During the final thirty years the shtetl has attracted a starting to be volume of scholarly consciousness, even though gross generalizations and romanticized nostalgia proceed to impact how the subject is taken care of. This quantity takes a brand new examine this most crucial aspect of East ecu Jewish lifestyles. It is helping to right the idea that the shtetl was once a completely Jewish international and exhibits the ways that the Jews of the shtetl interacted either with their co-religionists and with their gentile acquaintances. the quantity contains chapters at the background of the shtetl, its myths and realities, politics, gender dynamics, how the shtetl has been (mis)represented in literature, and the alterations led to by means of global struggle I and the Holocaust, between others.
Contributors: Samuel Kassow, Gershon David Hundert, Immanuel Etkes, Nehemia Polen, Henry Abramson, Konrad Zielinski, Jeremy Dauber, Israel Bartel, Naomi Seidman, Mikhail Krutikov, Arnold J. Band, Katarzyna Wieclawska, Yehunda Bauer, and Elie Wiesel.