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Empowered by the Soviet state before World War II to create a Jewish national culture, Soviet Jewish activists were interested in building such a culture because they were striving for a national revolution--through the creation of a new culture in which Jews would be able to identify themselves as Jews on new, secular, Soviet terms. This book explores the ways in which Jews functioned as part of, not apart from, the Soviet system, as well as Jewish history.
Reviews & endorsements
"...enlightening and...enjoyable." American Historical ReviewSee more reviews
"...an important contribution...moves beyond many of the stereotypically conventional ways historians have portrayed Soviet Jewish intellectuals in the past...well-documented study." Mark L. von Hagen, Columbia University
"Shneer's masterful account of Soviet nationalities policy and Yiddish language politics sets the stage for his discussion of how activists like Esther Frumkina, Moshe Litvakov, and Semen Dimanshteyn promoted Yiddish as Soviet policy." Russian Review, Sean Martin, Cleveland, Ohio
"[an] astute and comprehensive study" Journal of Modern History Abraham Brumberg, Chevy Chase, Marlyand
"This book is a welcome addition to the literature on Jews in eastern Europe. It will appeal to readers in the fields of Russian, Jewish and cultural studies. It could also interest people delving into the cultural aspects of the Jewish past." - Allan Laine Kagedan, Carleton University
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- Date Published: February 2004
- format: Hardback
- isbn: 9780521826303
- length: 312 pages
- dimensions: 229 x 152 x 21 mm
- weight: 0.63kg
- contains: 5 b/w illus. 10 tables
- availability: Available
Table of Contents
1. Soviet nationalities policies and the making of the Soviet Yiddish Intelligentsia
2. Ideology and Jewish language politics: How Yiddish became the national language of Soviet Jewry
3. Modernising Yiddish
4. Who owns the means of cultural production? The Soviet Yiddish publishing industry of the 1920s
5. Engineers of Jewish souls: Soviet Yiddish writers envisioning the Jewish past, present and future
6. Becoming revolutionary: Izi Kharik and the question of aesthetics, politics and ideology
Afterword. How does the story end?
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