The Internal Response to History

Benjamin Harshav

in Language in Time of Revolution

Published by University of California Press

Published in print August 1993 | ISBN: 9780520079588
Published online May 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780520912960 | DOI:
The Internal Response to History

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In the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, there were waves of pogroms and persecution; world wars and expulsions; the British White Paper of 1939 that barred further Jewish immigration and settlement in Palestine; the gates of Western countries closed to refugees from Nazi persecution. There was the total destruction of the nation in Europe, the center of its life for a millennium. However, people often overlook the fact that there were also crucial positive conditions. There were sweeping and comprehensive historical circumstances—some of them intended directly for the Jews, most not related to them at all—that enabled the Jews, in the final analysis, to change the very nature of their hovering existence of transnationalism.

Keywords: pogroms; persecution; wars; Nazi; Europe; Jews; transnationalism

Chapter.  1483 words. 

Subjects: Social and Cultural Anthropology

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