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Crisis and Creativity in the Sephardic World, 1391-1648 - Benjamin R. Gampel

Crisis and Creativity in the Sephardic World, 1391-1648

By: Benjamin R. Gampel (Editor)

Paperback Published: 3rd October 1997
ISBN: 9780231109239
Number Of Pages: 420
For Ages: 22+ years old

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On March 31, 1492, Queen Isabella and King Ferdinand signed an edict banishing all Jews from the kingdoms of Castile and Aragon. While Jewish communities had faced the dissolution of their age-old settlements throughout Iberia (a region of southwestern Europe that includes Spain and Portugal), it was the expulsion of Jews in Castile, Portugal, and Navarre after the reconquest of Islam in 1492 that would strike at the very soul of Jewish identity and echo across the centuries. Iberian (Sephardic) Jews, who had attained unprecedented heights of political, economic, and social integration, now had to confront their downfall, as they were dispersed and their culture was transformed.

Leading scholars in Jewish history, philosophy, literature, religion, and linguistics reflect on the traumatic expulsions and their aftermath in Jewish, European, and Mediterranean cultures. In fifteen essays the contributors bring into sharp relief three themes: the cultural vitality of the Sephardim in the waning years of their life on the Iberian Peninsula; the agonizing choice between religious conversion and exile; and the driving influence of cultural survival and change that permeated Sephardic intellectual and literary life. The result is a sweeping and instructive survey of Jewish catastrophe -- one that serves as a reference point to the tragic course of modern history.

Industry Reviews

The volume is nicely introduced by Yosef Yerushalmi's meditation on the concepts of exile and expulsion in the Jewish collective memory (as well as in the works oif modern historians). -- Bernard D. Cooperman, University of Maryland Sixteenth Century Journal Like the holocaust, the 1492 expulsion demands attention as a chapter in European as much as Jewish history. This wide-ranging symposium explores antecedents, causes, mechanics, and aftermath in fifteen studies reflecting the recent flowering of the 1492 scholarship... The resulting collection is a worthy introduction to that epic of tragedy and triumph. -- Robert I. Burns, S.J., author of Muslims, Christians, and Jews in the Crusader Kingdom of Valencia Societies in Symbiosis

Historical Overviewp. 1
Exile and Expulsion in Jewish Historyp. 3
Iberian Jewry: Culture and Societyp. 23
Secular Hebrew Poetry in Fifteenth-Century Spainp. 25
1492: A House Dividedp. 38
On Converso and Marrano Ethnicityp. 59
Iberian Jewry: The Expulsionsp. 77
Order of the Expulsion from Spain: Antecedents, Causes, and Textual Analysisp. 79
Expulsion or Integration? The Portuguese Jewish Problemp. 95
The Exiles of 1492 in the Kingdom of Navarre: A Biographical Perspectivep. 104
Continuity and Change in the Sephardic Diaspora: Communal Lifep. 119
The Self-Definition of the Sephardic Jews of Western Europe and Their Relation to the Alien and the Strangerp. 121
Prototypes of Leadership in a Sephardic Community: Smyrna in the Seventeenth Centuryp. 146
Sephardic Refugees in Ferrara: Two Notable Familiesp. 164
Continuity and Change in the Sephardic Diaspora: Intellectual Pursuitsp. 187
Encounters Between Spanish and Italian Kabbalists in the Generation of the Expulsionp. 189
The Ultimate End of Human Life in Postexpulsion Philosophic Literaturep. 223
Continuity and Change in the Sephardic Diaspora: Cultural Dimensionsp. 255
Hebrew Manuscripts and Printed Books Among the Sephardim Before and After the Expulsionp. 257
A Converso Best-Seller: Celestina and Her Foreign Offspringp. 267
Sephardic Ceremonial Art: Continuity in the Diasporap. 282
Notesp. 301
Indexp. 397
Table of Contents provided by Blackwell. All Rights Reserved.

ISBN: 9780231109239
ISBN-10: 0231109237
Audience: Professional
For Ages: 22+ years old
Format: Paperback
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 420
Published: 3rd October 1997
Publisher: Columbia University Press
Country of Publication: US
Dimensions (cm): 23.5 x 15.88  x 3.18
Weight (kg): 0.59