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HIST 219 (35)
Dan Heller (35)

Lecture 5

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HIST 219
Dan Heller

Lecture 5: 18 September 2013 • Doctrine of Witness – by seeing Jews in a subservient state and oppressed, visualize the errors of their ways in not believing in Jesus • “Othering” – a way of defining and securing one’s own positive identity through the stigmatization of an “other”. o People who engage in “othering” condemn traits of “others” as a way in which to both determine and affirm their own values • Rashi – Rabbi Shlomo Yitzhaki o Author of comprehensive commentaries for the Torah and Talmud o The most widely read Jewish commentator of the Torah to this day o Credited with being an innovator in Jewish education by providing commentaries that ordinary Jews could learn and understand  Feels that Jews need to have a clear meaning of the text  Writes clearly, lucid, accessible to everyone o Over the course of several centuries, the introduction to Judaism was reading Rashi’s work o Has a lot to say on the relationship between J&C  Concern of preserving J during the conversions and forced baptisms  Felt that J should not help C at all – even so far as giving to C homeless • Demonstrates anxiety that J are becoming C  On the other hand, has C neighbor coming over to house and brings a cake on Passover • Social reality that he is friendly with C neighbor • Lenient on Kosher rules for wine because J&C work together on wine production • Sometimes points to elements of C culture that J could aspire to • Sefer Hasidim – “Book of Pious” - text by Judah ben Samuel of Regensburg, a foundation work of Chassidei Ashkenaz teaching o Self- punishment o Consider J impure o Notion that they stick feet in water and hands in beehives – adopted by monks o Confess sins to rabbis o In the book, has wide range of topics regarding interactions between J&C • Who are the historical characters? What might these sources reveal? o Medieval World Expulsion from C Europe • Mass migration, new technologies, development of new ideas that transform the world of Jews • Migration to Polish Lithuanian Commonwealth & Ottoman Empire • In what ways are their experiences different than in the Medieval World? What features persist? • Pushed out of France, England, and Spain; economic opportunities in the east Expulsion from Iberian Peninsula • Mostly under Christian Rule – many Jews were receptive to the rule • 300,000 Jews living in Iberian Peninsula (Spain and Portugal) • Christian rulers are initially receptive and tolerant – see them as potential ally against the Muslims • Rise in anti-Jewish violence, anti-Jewish theology takes over region o Anti Jewish legislation by clergy • 1391 – crisis in Spain – riots that last for 25 years o Tens of thousands of Jews are murdered or forcibly converted to C o Tens of thousands flee from the region o Jews who have converted have more freedom – guilds, public officials  Christians fear that the converts are diluting C and committing acts of heresy
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