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3 Remote Warehouse Sociology- Jewish Studies

Building a Public Judaism: Synagogues and Jewish Identity in Nineteenth-Century Europe

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Building a Public Judaism: Synagogues and Jewish Identity in Nineteenth-Century Europe Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

Nineteenth-century Europe saw an unprecedented rise in the number of synagogues. Building a Public Judaism considers what their architecture and the circumstances surrounding their construction reveal about the social progress of modern European Jews. Looking at synagogues in four important centers of Jewish life--London, Amsterdam, Paris, and Berlin--Saskia Coenen Snyder argues that the process of claiming a Jewish space in European cities was a marker of acculturation but not of full acceptance. Whether modest or spectacular, these new edifices most often revealed the limits of European Jewish integration.

Debates over building initiatives provide Coenen Snyder with a vehicle for gauging how Jews approached questions of self-representation in predominantly Christian societies and how public manifestations of their identity were received. Synagogues fused the fundamentals of religion with the prevailing cultural codes in particular locales and served as aesthetic barometers for European Jewry's degree of modernization. Coenen Snyder finds that the dialogues surrounding synagogue construction varied significantly according to city. While the larger story is one of increasing self-agency in the public life of European Jews, it also highlights this agency's limitations, precisely in those places where Jews were thought to be most acculturated, namely in France and Germany.

Building a Public Judaism grants the peculiarities of place greater authority than they have been given in shaping the European Jewish experience. At the same time, its place-specific description of tensions over religious tolerance continues to echo in debates about the public presence of religious minorities in contemporary Europe.

Synopsis:

Coenen Snyder considers what the architecture and construction of nineteenth-century European synagogues reveal about the social progress of modern European Jews. The process of claiming a Jewish space was a marker of acculturation but not full acceptance, she argues. The new edifices, even if spectacular, revealed the limits of Jewish integration.

About the Author

Saskia Coenen Snyder is Assistant Professor of Modern Jewish History at the University of South Carolina.

University of South Carolina

Product Details

ISBN:
9780674059894
Subtitle:
Synagogues and Jewish Identity in Nineteenth-Century Europe
Author:
Snyder, Saskia Coenen
Author:
Saskia Coenen Snyder
Author:
Coenen Snyder, Saskia
Publisher:
Harvard University Press
Location:
Cambridge
Subject:
Judaism-Rituals and Practice
Subject:
History - Jewish
Subject:
ARCHITECTURE / Buildings / Religious
Subject:
History, Modern -- 19th century.
Copyright:
Edition Description:
Cloth
Publication Date:
20130108
Binding:
Hardback
Language:
English
Illustrations:
20 halftones
Pages:
360
Dimensions:
9 x 6 in

Related Subjects

» Arts and Entertainment » Architecture » Buildings » Religious
» Arts and Entertainment » Architecture » General
» History and Social Science » Sociology » Jewish Studies
» Religion » Judaism » History
» Religion » Judaism » Jewish History
» Religion » Judaism » Rituals and Practice

Building a Public Judaism: Synagogues and Jewish Identity in Nineteenth-Century Europe New Hardcover
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Product details 360 pages Harvard University Press - English 9780674059894 Reviews:
"Synopsis" by , Coenen Snyder considers what the architecture and construction of nineteenth-century European synagogues reveal about the social progress of modern European Jews. The process of claiming a Jewish space was a marker of acculturation but not full acceptance, she argues. The new edifices, even if spectacular, revealed the limits of Jewish integration.
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