Jews and Their Foodways

ISBN : 9780190265427

Anat Helman
336 Pages
156 x 235 mm
Pub date
Jan 2016
Studies in Contemporary Jewry
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Food is not just a physical necessity but also a composite commodity. It is part of a communication system, a nonverbal medium for expression, and a marker of special events. Bringing together contributions from fourteen historians, anthropologists, sociologists, and literary critics, Volume XXVIII of Studies in Contemporary Jewry presents various viewpoints on the subtle and intricate relations between Jews and their foodways. The ancient Jewish community ritualized and codified the sphere of food; by regulating specific and detailed culinary laws, Judaism extended and accentuated food's cultural meanings. Modern Jewry is no longer defined exclusively in religious terms, yet a decrease in the role of religion, including kashrut observance, does not necessarily entail any diminishment of the role of food. On the contrary, as shown by the essays in this volume, choices of food take on special importance when Jewish individuals and communities face the challenges of modernity. Following an introduction by Sidney Mintz and concluding with an overview by Richard Wilk, the symposium essays lead the reader from the 20th century to the 21st, across Europe, the Middle East, Africa, and North America. Through periods of war and peace, voluntary immigrations and forced deportations, want and abundance, contemporary Jews use food both for demarcating new borders in rapidly changing circumstances and for remembering a diverse heritage. Despite a tendency in traditional Jewish studies to focus on "high" culture and to marginalize "low" culture, Jews and Their Foodways demonstrates how an examination of people's eating habits helps to explain human life and its diversity through no less than the study of great events, the deeds of famous people, and the writings of distinguished rabbis.



Jews and Their Foodways

Sidney Mintz, Introduction

Anna Shternshis, Salo on Challah: Soviet Jews' Experience of Food in the 1920s-1950s

Hagit Lavsky, In the Wake of Starvation: Jewish Displaced Persons and Food in Post-Holocaust Germany

Ofra Tene, "The New Immigrant Must Not Only Learn, He Must Also Forget": The Making of Eretz Israeli Ashkenazi Cuisine

Orit Rozin, Craving Meat during Israel's Austerity Period, 1947-1953

Esther Meir-Glitzenstein, Longing for the Aromas of Baghdad: Food, Emigration, and Transformation in the Lives of Iraqi Jews in Israel in the 1950s

Hagar Salamon, Cutting into the Flesh of the Community: Ritual Slaughter, Meat Consumption, and the Transition from Ethiopia to Israel

Liora Gvion, Two Narratives of Israeli Food: "Jewish" versus "Ethnic"

Nir Avieli, Size Matters: Israeli Chefs Cooking Up a Nation

Paulette Kershenovich Schuster, A Tapestry of Tastes: Jewish Women of Syrian Descent and Their Cooking in Mexico and Israel

Shaul Stampfer, Bagel and Falafel: Two Iconic Jewish Foods and One Modern Jewish Identity

Andrea Most, The Contemporary Jewish Food Movement in North America: A Report from the Field(s)

Sander L. Gilman, Jews and Fat: Thoughts toward a History of an Image in the Second Age of Biology

Richard Wilk, Paradoxes of Jews and Their Foods

Review Essays

Kim Wunschmann, Exploring the Universe of Camps and Ghettos: Classifications and Interpretations of the Nazi Topography of Terror

Amir Banbaji, The Literary Character of the Haskalah

Book Reviews

Antisemitism, Holocaust, and Genocide

Evan Burr Bukey, Jews and Intermarriage in Nazi Austria, Barbara F. Okun

Geoffrey P. Megargee (ed.), The United States Holocaust Memorial Museum

Encyclopedia of Camps and Ghettos, 1933-1945, vol. 1, Early Camps, Youth Camps, and Concentration Camps and Subcamps under the SS-Business and Administration Main Office (WVHA), Kim Wunschmann

Dan Michman, The Emergence of Jewish Ghettos during the Holocaust, trans. Lenn J. Schramm, Kim Wunschmann

Guy Miron and Shlomit Shulhani (eds.), The Yad Vashem Encyclopedia of the Ghettos during the Holocaust, Kim Wuenschmann

Biography, History, and the Social Sciences

Pierre Birnbaum, La Republique et le cochon, David Weinberg

Yossi Goldstein, Golda: biografiyah, Matthew Silver

Sebastian Hoepfner, Jewish Organizations in Transatlantic Perspective: Patterns of Contemporary Jewish Politics in Germany and the United States, Tobias Brinkmann

Alice Kessler-Harris, A Difficult Woman: The Challenging Life and Times of Lillian Hellman, Nancy Sinkoff

Guy Miron, The Waning of Emancipation: Jewish History, Memory and the Rise of Fascism in Germany, France and Hungary, Pierre Birnbaum

Stephen Sharot, Comparative Perspectives on Judaisms and Jewish Identities, Eliezer Ben-Rafael

Azriel Shohet, The Jews of Pinsk, 1881 to 1941, ed. Mark Jay Mirsky and Moshe Rosman; trans. Faigie Tropper and Moshe Rosman, Antony Polonsky

Gerald Sorin, Howard Fast: Life and Literature in the Left Lane, Stephen J. Whitfield

Scott Ury, Barricades and Banners: The Revolution of 1905 and the Transformation of Warsaw Jewry, Brian Horowitz

Kalman Weiser, Jewish People, Yiddish Nation: Noah Prylucki and the Folkists in Poland, Gali Drucker Bar-Am

Religion, Thought, and Culture

Nathan Abrams, The New Jew in Film: Exploring Jewishness and Judaism in Contemporary Cinema, Aharon Feuerstein

Hamutal Bar-Yosef, Mysticism in Twentieth Century Hebrew Literature, Galili Shahar

Aliza Cohen-Mushlin et al., Synagogues in Lithuania: A Catalogue, Sharman Kadish

David Ellenson and Daniel Gordis, Pledges of Jewish Allegiance: Conversion, Law, and Policymaking in Nineteenth- and Twentieth-Century Orthodox Responsa, Shmuel Shilo

Sharman Kadish, The Synagogues of Britain and Ireland: An Architectural and Social History, Vladimir Levin

Olga Litvak, Haskalah: The Romantic Movement in Judaism, Amir Banbaji

Zionism, Israel, and the Middle East

Yoel Cohen, God, Jews and the Media: Religion and Israel's Media, Kimmy Caplan

Beverly Mizrachi, Paths to Middle-Class Mobility among Second-Generation Moroccan Immigrant Women in Israel, Henriette Dahan Kalev

Anita Shapira, Israel: A History, Gideon Shimoni

Ari Shavit, My Promised Land: The Triumph and Tragedy of Israel, Gideon Shimoni

Contents for Volume XXIX

Note on Editorial Policy

About the author: 

Anat Helman is Associate Professor in the Department of Jewish History and Contemporary Jewry at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem.

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