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Militant Messiah: Or, the Flight from the Ghetto: The Story of Jacob Frank the Frankist Movement

Saturday, November 30, 2013
This work provides a fine introduction not only to Jacob Frank and the Frankists, but also to events surrounding the man and his movement. It also describes other developments within Judaism. For instance, Mandel comments, (quote) In Hassidism the concepts of good and evil undergo a certain qualification. They no longer are determined by the deed itself, but depend on the doer. The same deed that would be evil committed by an ordinary man, committed by the tsaddik is good. (unquote). (p. 19). However, the Frankist movement went to the extreme of full-blown antinomianism. (p. 36, 37). >>more...

he Mixed Multitude: Jacob Frank and the Frankist Movement, 1755-1816 (Jewish Culture and Contexts

Saturday, November 30, 2013
This work goes deep into theology, and focuses on the interface of Christianity and Judaism in the 18th century. Owing to the breadth of the topics presented, I focus only on a few issues, notably those I consider to be of broader significance. >>more...

Russian Realities & Problems An Overview of Russia, with Roman Dmowski's Detailed English-Language Contribution on Pre-Independence Poland

Monday, October 15, 2012
This anthology not only discusses the situation in Russia just before the Russian Revolution, but also gives much information about foreign-ruled Poland in the late 19th and early 20th century. I focus mainly on the latter.

The savagery of the German occupation of northwestern Poland is recounted by Roman Dmowski, (quote) In the years just prior to the War the papers brought them occasional news about a desperate struggle for existence going on in German Poland, about the unheard-of measures employed by the Germans for the purpose of destroying the Polish nationality, about the law to expropriate Polish landed estates, about the Polish children being flogged because they insisted on praying in their mother tongue, and so on." (unquote) (pp. 83-84). >>more...

War, Jews, and the New Europe: The Diplomacy of Lucien Wolf, 1914-1919

Thursday, August 16, 2012
This book focuses on different political positions, personages, and developments concerning Jews during this pivotal time in history. Lucien Wolf was a Polonized Jew and, despite his membership in the Jewish-separatist BUND, supported Polonization among Poland's Jews. (p. 168). Wolf recognized the Jews' pivotal role in the 1905 Russian revolution. (p. 12). As late as at least 1917, Wolf supported the empires. (p. 179). >>more...

The Polish Jew, his social and economic value

Sunday, July 15, 2012
A Fascinating 1906 Analysis of Polish-Jewish Relations in Late-Tsarist Russian Ruled Poland, July 10, 2012 This review is from: The Polish Jew, his social and economic value (Paperback) The British author's understanding of Jews is quite different from that of westerners, and she points out that her conclusions are supported by eight years' residence in Russian-ruled central Poland. (Preface). She asks, (quote) Can he [the westerner] imagine the capital of Poland, the most civilized city in Russia, the link between Europe and Asia, where every third man is a Jew, where the trade and commerce are in the hands of the Jews and where Jewish organizations have openly declared their intention of converting the Imperial army to the tenets of Socialism and of gaining the greatest amount of political influence...? (unquote). >>more...

Anti-Jewish Violence: Rethinking the Pogrom in East European History

Monday, June 25, 2012
The authors support the view that the early pogroms in tsarist Russia (such as those of 1881-1882) were not, as earlier believed, incited by the government. (p. 4, 7, 138). Pogroms during tsarist rule varied in severity by region. They were rare in Belorussia, Lithuania, southern Ukraine, and Crimea. Later pogroms, as during the Russian revolution were, however, organized (in this instance, by both Reds and Whites) >>more...

On Modern Jewish Politics (Studies in Jewish History (Oxford Paperback))

Monday, June 25, 2012
This review is from: On Modern Jewish Politics (Studies in Jewish History (Oxford Paperback)) (Paperback) The Litvaks (Litwaks, LITVAKES in Yiddish) were long the objects of not only Endek but also Jewish preoccupation: "...in the Jewish world of Eastern Europe these Litvaks were celebrated--or damned--for their well-known tendencies toward modernization, secularization, radicalism, and the logical extension of all this, namely, modern nationalism." (p. 42). >>more...

How Jews Killed Jews In Order To Create The State Of Israel

Sunday, May 27, 2012
Now, when professor of Jewish history at Brandeis University, Anthony Polonsky published a monumental three volume work entitled “Jews in Poland and Russia,” and in Israel opinions are divided about the wisdom of proposed nuclear bombing of Iran one should also remember the book of Naeim Giladi and his description how Jews killed Jews in order to create the state of Israel. Naeim Giladi, is the author of the book: “Ben-Gurion’s Scandals: How The Haganah and Mossad Eliminated Jews” (Dandelion Books, LLC, Tempe Arizona, 2nd expanded edition 2003). >>more...

The Image of the Jew in Polish Folk Culture (Studies on Polish Jewry)

Monday, May 7, 2012
For a long time, Jews in Poland recognizably held a higher place than the village peasant--that is, most Poles. Notwithstanding the contempt for him as a trader, "The Jew could be in authority both in the rural community and in the nobleman's manor. He was a source of information, gave advice, and acted as go-between." (p. 19). In time, Polish peasants began to compete with Jews in business. During the pre-WWII period, supporters of the economic boycott of Jews sang this ditty: "Don't buy from the Jew, but from your own./ Take a knotty cane, and chase the scabby Jew from Poland./ Why should they be lords in Poland? Let them rather be horses for Arabs in Palestine!" (p. 59). >>more...

From a Ruined Garden, Second Expanded Edition: The Memorial Books of Polish Jewry (Indiana-Holocaust Museum Reprint)

Saturday, March 24, 2012
This work, in its expanded 2nd edition, is an anthology of Jewish publications originally written mainly in Yiddish. It takes the "pulse" of Poland's once-huge Jewish community. The book title comes from a Holocaust survivor who, alluding to the rarity of Jewish survival, compared himself to one branch from one plant of a ruined garden. >>more...
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