A. Buckser's After the Rescue: Jewish Identity and Community in PDF

By A. Buckser

ISBN-10: 0312239459

ISBN-13: 9780312239459

In October of 1943, the Danish resistance rescued just about all of the Jews in Copenhagen from roundups by way of the occupying Nazis. within the years on account that, Jews became deeply engaged in a Danish tradition that provides only a few obstacles of anti-Semitism or prejudice. This telling ethnographic examine explores the questions that such inclusion increases for the Danish Jews, and what their solutions can let us know in regards to the which means of faith, ethnicity, and neighborhood in sleek society.Social scientists have lengthy argued that modernity poses demanding situations to conventional ethnic groups, by means of breaking down the networks of locality, kinship, faith, and career that experience held such groups jointly. For Danish Jews, inclusion into the bigger society has resulted in expanding fragmentation, because the group has cut up right into a bewildering array of spiritual, social, and political factions. The community's power energy within the face of such fragmentation, and the continued significance of Jewishness to the self-identity of its contributors, issues to a brand new figuring out of the that means of ethnic group in modern society.

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Additional resources for After the Rescue: Jewish Identity and Community in Contemporary Denmark (Contemporary Anthropology of Religion)

Sample text

The population, which had declined from 3,264 in 1890 to 2,826 in 1900, shot up to 5,875 by 1921; of that number, 3,146 were either immigrants or their children (Blum 1972: 37). In the course of two decades, the Copenhagen Jews changed from a declining and largely homogeneous middleclass community to a large, diverse, and sharply polarized one. The Jews had, of course, experienced divisions in the eighteenth century, 42 ² After the Rescue both among classes and among ideologies, but these differences had presupposed a broad cultural commonality.

Some dramas did occur, of course, and some factional quarrels continued. But on the whole, the development of the Jewish community proceeded much as Nathanson and his followers had envisioned it—slowly and steadily, the Jews changed from an outcast cultural isolate to a prosperous and integrated branch of Danish society. Things didn’t start out that way. The 1814 decree did nothing to stem the anti-Jewish feeling that had expressed itself the previous summer, and as the Danish economy continued its decline, accusations that the Jews had sabotaged the nation surfaced repeatedly.

For many such people, being Jewish posed significant problems. Literary rivals of Georg Brandes disparaged his Jewish origins, while Privatbanken founder David Baruch Adler was forced out by an anti-Semitic director. Some Jews, like the poet Henrik Hertz, therefore converted to Lutheranism and avoided any public mention of their background (Borchsenius 1968: 71–76). Others, however, engaged the question directly—most notably Meir Goldschmidt, whose novels A Jew (1968) and The Raven (1867) explored the dilemmas of Jewish identity in Danish society.

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After the Rescue: Jewish Identity and Community in Contemporary Denmark (Contemporary Anthropology of Religion) by A. Buckser


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