HIST 230
Modern European Jewish History, 1789-1948
Last Offered Fall 2021
Division II
Cross-listed JWST 230
This course is not offered in the current catalog

Class Details

What does it mean to be a Jew? The vexed question of Jewish identity emerged anew at the end of the eighteenth century in Europe and has dominated Jewish history throughout the modern period. Although Jewish emancipation and citizenship followed different paths in different parts of Europe, in general Jews were confronted by unprecedented opportunities for integration into non-Jewish society and unprecedented challenges to Jewish communal life. Focusing primarily on France and Germany, and to a lesser extent on the Polish lands, this course will introduce students to the major social, cultural, religious, and political transformations that shaped the lives of European Jews from the outbreak of the French Revolution to the aftermath of World War II. We will explore such topics as emancipation, Jewish diversity, the reform of Judaism, competing political ideologies, Jewish-gentile relations, the rise of modern antisemitism, the role of Jewish women, interwar Jewish life and culture, Jewish responses to Nazism and the Holocaust, and the situation of Jews in the immediate postwar period. In addition to broad historical treatments, course materials will include memoirs, diaries, and fiction.
The Class: Format: lecture; discussion
Limit: 40
Expected: 10-20
Class#: 1621
Grading: yes pass/fail option, yes fifth course option
Requirements/Evaluation: class participation, two papers, and a final exam
Prerequisites: none
Enrollment Preferences: Jewish studies concentrators, first-years, sophomores
Distributions: Division II
Notes: This course is cross-listed and the prefixes carry the following divisional credit:
JWST 230 Division II HIST 230 Division II
Attributes: HIST Group C Electives - Europe and Russia
JWST Core Electives

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