Page 41 - Jewish Book Annual Volume 39

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GERBER / JEWISH HISTORICAL WRITING
35
European Jewry. In
Out of the Ghetto, the Social Background ofJewish
Emancipation, 1770-1870
(Cambridge, 1973) Katz boldly modifies
accepted historiographic notions o f the Jewish emergence from
the ghetto and the underly ing processes which tran sfo rm ed
European Jewry from a traditional community to a modernizing
entity. His latest book,
From Prejudice to Destruction, Anti-Semitism,
1700-1933
(Cambridge, 1980), presents ano ther major re fo rm u ­
lation of a crucial phenom enon o f Jewish history — m odern
anti-Semitism.
Western European Jewry has been the subject o f a num be r o f
excellent studies. Social history has been particularly well-treated
by Todd Endelman in
TheJews in Georgian England
(Philadelphia,
1979) and Paula Hyman in
From Dreyfus to Vichy: the Remaking of
French Jewry, 1906-1939
(New York, 1979). A number o f major
contributions to the history o f German Jewry have also been
published recently from a variety o f perspectives. The monum en ­
tal b io g rap h y
Moses Mendelssohn
by A le x a n d e r A l tm an n
(Philadelphia, 1973) exhaustively examines the life, times and
works o f this towering personality o f European Jewry. T he
growth o f the more lethal “scientific” form o f racial anti-Semitism
in the second ha lf o f the n ineteenth century and the response it
evoked among Jews is the subject o f an importan t study by Ismar
Schorsch,
Jewish Reactions to German Anti-Semitism, 1870-1914
,
(New York and Philadelphia, 1972). Ano ther perspective on the
Jewish response to German anti-Semitism is found in the fascinat­
ing analysis o f intellectual history by Uriel Tal in
Christians and
Jews in Germany: Religion, Politics and Ideology in the Second Reich,
1870-1914
(Ithaca, 1975). Yet ano the r view of the period is
illuminated by Jehuda Reinharz in
Fatherland orPromised Land: the
Dilemma of the German Jew, 1893-1914
(Ann Arbor, 1975). T he
Jewish question in Germany is viewed from the perspective of
German popu lar culture by George Mosse in
Germans and Jews:
The Right, the Left and the Search fo r a “Third Force
in Pre-Nazi
Germany
(New York, 1970). A brilliant and exhaustive study of
Bismarck and his banker Bleichroder, replete with observations
on the career o f a “prom inen t Jew” in Wilhelmian Germany is
presented by Fritz Stern in
Gold andiron, Bismarck, Bleichroder, and
the Building of the German Empire
(New York, 1977).
The largely un tapped areas o f Jewish life in Russia and Poland
have been the subject o f a few impo rtan t historical studies in the