Everyday Jewish Life in Imperial Russia
Select Documents, 1772-1914
Editors: ChaeRan Y. Freeze and Jay M. Harris
This book makes accessible — for the first time in English — declassified archival documents from the former Soviet Union, rabbinic sources and previously untranslated memoirs, illuminating everyday Jewish life as the site of interaction and negotiation among and between neighbors, society, and the Russian state, from the beginning of the 19th century to World War I. Focusing on religion, family, health, sexuality, work and politics, these documents provide an intimate portrait of the rich diversity of Jewish life. By personalizing collective experience through individual life stories — reflecting not only the typical but also the extraordinary — the sources reveal the tensions and ruptures in a vanished society. An introductory survey of Russian Jewish history from the Polish partitions (1772-95) to World War I combines with prefatory remarks, textual annotations and a bibliography of suggested readings to provide a new perspective on the history of the Jews of Russia.
Subject: Jewish Studies