From the original legends of the Bible to the peace accords of today's newspapers, this engaging, one-volume history of the Jews will fascinate and inform. 30 illustrations.
From the Publisher: A Short History of the Jews is the story of the Jewish people told in a sweeping and powerful historical narrative. Michael Brenner chronicles the Jewish experience from Biblical times to today, tracing what is at heart a drama of migration and change, yet one that is also deeply rooted in tradition. He surveys the latest scholarly perspectives in Jewish history, making this short history the most learned yet broadly accessible book available on the subject. Brenner takes readers from the mythic wanderings of Moses to the unspeakable atrocities of the Holocaust; from the Babylonian exile to the founding of the modern state of Israel; and from the Sephardic communities under medieval Islam to the shtetls of eastern Europe and the Hasidic enclaves of modern-day Brooklyn. This richly illustrated book is full of fascinating and often personal stories of exodus and return, from that told about Abraham, who brought his newfound faith into the land of Canaan, to that of Holocaust survivor Esther Barkai, who lived on a kibbutz established on a German estate seized from the Nazi Julius Streicher as she awaited resettlement in Israel. Brenner traces the major events, developments, and personalities that have shaped Jewish history down through the centuries, and highlights the important contributions Jews have made to the arts, politics, religion, and science. Breathtaking in scope, A Short History of the Jews is a compelling blend of storytelling and scholarship that brings the history of the Jewish people marvelously to life.
A comprehensive, detailed survey of Jewish politics, religion, economics, and society and of Jewish life and achievement, from the second millennium B.C. through the Diaspora, and in the state of Israel
Who are the Jews--a race, a people, a religious group? For over a century, non-Jews and Jews alike have tried to identify who they were--first applying the methods of physical anthropology and more recently of population genetics. In Legacy, Harry Ostrer, a medical geneticist and authority on the genetics of the Jewish people, explores not only the history of these efforts, but also the insights that genetics has provided about the histories of contemporary Jewish people. Much of the book is told through the lives of scientific pioneers. We meet Russian immigrant Maurice Fishberg; Australian Joseph Jacobs, the leading Jewish anthropologist in fin-de-siècle Europe; Chaim Sheba, a colorful Israeli geneticist and surgeon general of the Israeli Army; and Arthur Mourant, one of the foremost cataloguers of blood groups in the 20th century. As Ostrer describes their work and the work of others, he shows that to look over the genetics of Jewish groups, and to see the history of the Diaspora woven there, is truly a marvel. Here is what happened as the Jews migrated to new places and saw their numbers wax and wane, as they gained and lost adherents and thrived or were buffeted by famine, disease, wars, and persecution. Many of these groups--from North Africa, the Middle East, India--are little-known, and by telling their stories, Ostrer brings them to the forefront at a time when assimilation is literally changing the face of world Jewry. A fascinating blend of history, science, and biography, Legacy offers readers an entirely fresh perspective on the Jewish people and their history. It is as well a cutting-edge portrait of population genetics, a field which may soon take its place as a pillar of group identity alongside shared spirituality, shared social values, and a shared cultural legacy.
At the end of 1984 and in May 1991 virtually the whole of the ancient black Jewish community of Ethiopia - known as the Falashas or Beta Israel - was transported to Israel in two massive secret airlifts. This drastic step was necessary because the situation of the approximately 50,000 people had become desperate. The only way to rescue them from intolerable conditions was to unite them with their co-religionists in the Promised Land where, throughout the centuries, they had longed to live. In the first two editions of this book David Kessler gave a brief outline of the history of these people from Biblical times and described their struggle against the lay and religious establishment for recognition as an authentic branch of the Jewish people. The airlifts of 1984 and 1991 were a vindication of their claim. This third, revised edition comprises the whole of the original volume and is enhanced by the addition of a new preface and an afterword which seek to reply to criticisms of the author's argument about the origins of the Falashas, and include some new thinking on the subject. Drawing on tradition and legend to reinforce his argument, the author again traces the source of the community to the Jewish settlements which existed in ancient Egypt (particularly at Elephantine on the Nile) and in the ancient Meroitic kingdom, in present-day Sudan, known in the Bible as Cush.
A comprehensive overview of more than four thousand years of Jewish history includes maps, artwork, chronologies, and commentary
A Short History of the Jewish People, Emil Bernhard Cohn, revised and expanded by Hayim Perelmuter. A succinct history of the Jewish people from Old Testament times to the present.
To shed light on the tensions he observed between Jewish perceptions of power versus political realitieswhich "are often the cause of misguided political decisions," like Israel's Lebanese WarBiale analyzes Jewish history from the point of view of politics and power. The author of Gershom Scholem: Kabbalah and Counter-History here challenges the conventions of what he terms the Jewish "mythical past": the anachronistic interpretation that the Diaspora, which occurred between the fall of an independent Jewish commonwealth in A.D. 70 and the rebirth of the State of Israel in 1948, was politically impotent, and, conversely, that the First and Second Temple periods were eras of full Jewish national sovereignty.