Frontmatter

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Title Series Information

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Title Page

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Copyright Page

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Dedication

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Contents

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pp. vii-viii

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Foreword

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pp. ix-x

The Rutgers book series Key Words in Jewish Studies seeks to introduce students and scholars alike to vigorous developments in the field by exploring its terms. These words and phrases reference important concepts, issues, practices, events, and circumstances. But terms also refer to standards, even to preconditions; ...

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Preface

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pp. xi-xvi

This book is part of the Keywords in Jewish Studies series; I have taken the point of my contribution to this collective scholarly enterprise very much to heart. It is meant to serve as a point of entry into the study of the Haskalah, to introduce students, teachers, and scholars to a subject, an idea, ...

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Acknowledgments

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pp. xv-xvi

For their support of the project and their critical feedback, I am grateful to the editors of the Keywords in Jewish Studies series, Deborah Dash Moore, Macdonald Moore, and Andrew Bush. My thanks to Leora Batnitzky, Willi Goetschel, Gershon Hundert, Marcus Moseley, Derek Penslar, Moshe Rosman, ...

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Note on Transliteration

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pp. xvii-xviii

In transliterating Hebrew and Russian, I have followed the Library of Congress rules, except that I have eliminated most diacritical marks. Yiddish terms are generally romanized according to the standards of the YIVO Institute for Jewish Research. All translations are my own, except where indicated. ...

Part I. Terms of Debate

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pp. 1-2

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Chapter 1. Wrong Time, Wrong Place

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pp. 3-22

The historical treatment of the Haskalah is a case study in mistranslation. Scholarly convention uniformly renders this Hebrew word as “enlightenment,” a definition that inevitably invites comparison with the European movement of the same name. Nearly every book or article dealing with the subject assumes ...

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Chapter 2. Beyond the Enlightenment

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pp. 23-46

In defiance of basic chronological and geographical discrepancies, Haskalah scholarship persists in trying to wedge the history of a nineteenth-century Eastern European movement into the history of eighteenth-century Western Europe. New books that advance bold interpretive claims about the Haskalah ...

Part II. State of the Question

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pp. 47-48

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Chapter 3. Haskalah and History

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pp. 49-64

Historical scholarship on the Haskalah is driven principally by the continual reassessment of the connection between the “Jewish Enlightenment” and the Jewish experience of modernity. The received view assumed a direct and “intimate relationship” between the “Jewish Enlightenment” and the revolutionary ...

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Chapter 4. Haskalah and Modern Jewish Thought

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pp. 65-78

In the study of modern Jewish thought, Mendelssohn typically stands in for the Haskalah. For historians of Judaism, Mendelssohn’s work is a litmus test for the possibility of a “Jewish Enlightenment,” construed as a philosophical experiment rather than a set of new social or literary practices. ...

Part III. In a New Key

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pp. 79-80

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Chapter 5. Exile

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pp. 81-88

Romantic currents filtered into eighteenth-century Jewish thought with Luzzatto and Mendelssohn. But the Haskalah only crystallized into a movement when the idea of Jewish renewal became an ideology that supplied a novel answer to the question of Exile (Heb. galut). Most Eastern European Jewish intellectuals ...

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Chapter 6. New Creation

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pp. 89-112

Maskilic discourse developed within the framework of the Jewish mythology of Exile; but it was the partition of Poland and the reconfiguration of political authority in Eastern Europe between the 1780s and the 1830s that provided the immediate context for a new vision of cultural and intellectual renewal. ...

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Chapter 7. Faith

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pp. 113-130

Jewish Romanticism developed against the visible contradictions of imperial geography. The partitions introduced an alternative political structure into Polish Jewish life. Prussia annexed its Polish territories outright, absorbed the province of Poznan into its administrative structure, and renamed it Posen ...

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Chapter 8. Paradise

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pp. 131-156

In 1860, Sh. J. Fuenn published the first-ever history of Jewish Vilna. Entitled City of Faith (Heb. Kiryah ne’emanah), the book located Vilna at the center of rabbinic learning. But its author was hardly a traditional rabbi. Throughout his long life, Fuenn continued to play a leading role in the various projects ...

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Chapter 9. Fall

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pp. 157-180

If the northern paradise of “perfected Jewish manhood” had a bad conscience, then it spoke Yiddish and presided over the infamously “lawless world” of the southern provinces of the Pale of Settlement. Of course, the use of Eastern Europe’s Jewish vernacular was not confined to Volhynia and Podolia. ...

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Chapter 10. The End of Enlightenment

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pp. 181-190

In 1792, a Prussian scholar and litterateur named Karl Philipp Moritz introduced to the German reading public a book of “particular worth,” notable for its “nonpartisan and unprejudiced depiction of Judaism.” The “story,” Moritz promised, would “transport” the reader “into the area among the people where chance ...

Notes

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pp. 191-220

Index

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pp. 221-226

About the Author

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p. 227