Jewish Studies Theses and Dissertations
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- ItemAHAD HA‘AM AND ISRAEL FRIEDLAENDER: CULTURAL ZIONISM IN AN AMERICAN CONTEXT(2019) Meinrat, Noam; Rozenblit, Marsha L; Jewish Studies; Digital Repository at the University of Maryland; University of Maryland (College Park, Md.)Ahad Ha'am (Asher Ginsberg, 1856-1927) was an influential Zionist leader and publicist. This thesis explores his ideas on Zionism, the diaspora and American Jewishness. These views are put in comparison with those of his early American disciple, Israel Friedlaender (1876-1920). The negation of the exile has been a major part of Ahad Ha'am's thought, and his sporadic references to American Jewry are no exceptions. Despite this, Cultural Zionists in the United States, such as Friedlaender, were able to use his ideas as a basis for diaspora Zionism. The comparison between Ahad Ha'am and Friedlaender will show some of the early ways in which Ahad Ha'am's views were adapted in what was soon becoming the world's largest Jewish community.
- ItemMussar and Polemics in the Historiographical Trilogy of Rabbi Ya'akov Halevi Lifshitz(2015) Rose, Rachael Charlsie; Cooperman, Bernard D.; Manekin, Charles H.; Jewish Studies; Digital Repository at the University of Maryland; University of Maryland (College Park, Md.)This thesis explains how Zikhron Ya’akov by Rabbi Ya’akov Halevi Lifshitz (1838 -1921) represents not simply a memoir of a deceased Rabbi, but avant-garde counter-history as well as mussar literature. Defining Zikhron Ya’akov as a counter-history involves accepting that Lifshitz himself wrote extensively, but not as a demure marginal autobiographer recounting his story in a modest memoir. Rather, it involves accepting that Lifshitz wrote as a radical historiographer, attempting to focus on his own self and effectively identifying as a creator of a controversial new system of thinking. Writing under rapidly changing historical circumstances, Lifshitz neither writes a history, nor does he identify as a historian. As a polemicist and a rhetorical writer whose work is now classed in the complex system of mussar literature, Lifshitz creates a historiography for posterity linked closely with his own legacy. The translations included in the appendix help guide the reader through material covered by the thesis.
- Item"Forging an Identity": The Representation of Women in Jewish Museums(2014) Rabinowitz, Rachel Shayna; Zakim, Eric; Jewish Studies; Digital Repository at the University of Maryland; University of Maryland (College Park, Md.)Museums reflect the way a society looks at the past, but upon closer examination this reflection is bidirectional; museums are shaped by our current social norms and culture as much as built on our past. From their inception, museums have refined the public's understanding of the world around them. Through an analysis of six Jewish museums and their portrayal of Jewish women, it will become clear how museums are a reflection of society.
- ItemIncreasing Inclusivity for Queer Families in Jewish Institutions(2011) Feinspan, Suzanne Hall; Grossman, Maxine; Jewish Studies; Digital Repository at the University of Maryland; University of Maryland (College Park, Md.)The goal of this study was to create an inclusion guide to be used by Jewish institutions in order to increase their level of inclusivity of LGBTQ families. The thesis includes the guide itself, as well as a paper briefly outlining the history of LGBTQ Jews and comparing the inclusion efforts of a variety of institutions to ascertain commonalities in these processes. Also included is a summary of a survey that was completed as part of the study.
- ItemFROM SELLING RAGS TO WEARING RICHES: GERMAN JEWS' ECONOMIC PROGRESS IN THE FIRST HALF OF THE NINETEENTH CENTURY(2010) Revzin, Naomi Tischler; Rozenblit, Marsha L.; Jewish Studies; Digital Repository at the University of Maryland; University of Maryland (College Park, Md.)This study investigates how mainstream German Jews in the first half of the nineteenth century moved from the edges of society into the German economic middle class, as their marginal occupations, especially petty commerce and peddling, inadvertently positioned them to be at the forefront of German industrialization. The narratives of Jewish businessmen, combined with articles in two Jewish newspapers, indicate that Jewish entrepreneurs of that period continued to focus on commerce and were well positioned to take advantage of niche opportunities that the German gentile population overlooked. The study also showed how these Jewish businessmen publicly supported artisanry and the German guild system, as they simultaneously used their master certifications to start their own businesses. It reveals how Jewish businessmen's thinking changed, as they moved from marginal to mainstream and impacted the way they conducted business, as they moved from selling rags to wearing riches.