Chapter

The Vilna Gaon and the Beginning of the Struggle against Hasidism

Immanuel Etkes

in The Gaon of Vilna

Published by University of California Press

Published in print May 2002 | ISBN: 9780520223943
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780520925076 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1525/california/9780520223943.003.0004
The Vilna Gaon and the Beginning of the Struggle against Hasidism

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This chapter discusses various aspects of the controversy between the Hasidism and the Mitnagdim and evaluates the role of Vilna Gaon in the struggle against Hasidism. The findings contradict the view that the struggle against Hasidism began as an initiative of the oligarchy, and that the Gaon merely served as a figurehead that the establishment was pleased to use. The result reveals that the basic motives underlying the struggle against Hasidism were spiritual and religious, and not political and social.

Keywords: Hasidism; Mitnagdim; Vilna Gaon; oligarchy; spiritual; religious

Chapter.  9047 words. 

Subjects: Modern History (1700 to 1945)

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