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Aron Freimann Lecture of Jewish Cultural History: "Reshaping the Early Modern Jewish World: Jewish Philanthropic Networks and the Rise of Sabbathean Messianism"

Adam Teller

This lecture examines the seventeenth century development of the Jewish trans-regional network that supported Jews in the Land of Israel and its effects on the Jews’ social, economic, and religious lives.  Following the collapse of Polish-Jewish funding in the aftermath of the 1648 Khmelnytsky uprising, poverty in Jerusalem caused great suffering including a famine in which many women died. The search for new sources of income put increased pressure on the philanthropic network: the Ashkenazi women of Jerusalem tried to establish their own fundraising mechanism, while the men employed a kabbalist, Nathan Shapira, to collect for them. While in north-western Europe, Shapira met with millenarian Protestants who saw in the Jews’ sufferings a sign of the Messiah’s imminent return. When they sent money to Jerusalem, the community there – including the young Nathan of Gaza – was forced to reconsider its attitude towards them. Nathan had grown up in the post-1648 world of Jewish philanthropy and his use of trans-regional fundraising strategies gave the new Sabbathean messianism its global reach.

Adam Teller is Professor of History and of Judaic Studies at Brown University, Providence, USA


Mittwoch, 11.12.2019
Beginn: 18:00
Veranstaltungsort: IG 411
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