(Jewish Social Studies) Epidemics & Other Disasters: Views from Jewish Studies (Coronavirus)

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Historiographical scholarship tracking the responses, including theological, of a small people caught up in the swell of impacted global crises, here being primarily plagues and pandemics. As editors Elissa Bemporad,  Julia Phillips Cohen, and  Ari Y. Kelman suggest, the shift here in a general way is  from History to Nature. The reference to Dubnov reflecting on his writing of medieval history during the early twentieth century suggests that Jewish Studies has heretofore been preoccupied with the former (History) at the expense of the latter (Nature). The two, of course, overlap. But the disasters in this volume are not the usual ones foregrounded in Jewish Studies, i.e. gentile violence against Jews, but rather so-called natural disasters behind which the hand of God? Kudos to the editors at Jewish Social Studies. 

Jewish Social Studies recognizes the increasingly fluid methodological and disciplinary boundaries within the humanities and is particularly interested both in exploring different approaches to Jewish history and in critical inquiry into the concepts and theoretical stances that underpin its problematics. It publishes specific case studies, engages in theoretical discussion, and advances the understanding of Jewish life as well as the multifaceted narratives that constitute its historiography.

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Indiana University Press

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Volume 26, Number 1, Fall 2020

Table of Contents

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  1. Jewish Studies in Times of Crisis
  2. Elissa BemporadJulia Phillips CohenAri Y. Kelman
  3. pp. 5-19
  4. full access 
  1. The Pandemic, Antisemitism, and the Lachrymose Conception of Jewish History
  2. Magda Teter
  3. pp. 20-32
  4. full access 
  1. COVID-19 and the Theological Challenge of the Arbitrary
  2. Shaul Magid
  3. pp. 33-45
  4. full access 
  1. Ottoman Jews and Plagues
  2. Yaron Ayalon
  3. pp. 46-54
  4. full access 
  1. Learning from Disasters Past: The Case of an Early Seventeenth-Century Plague in Northern Italy and Beyond
  2. Dean Phillip Bell
  3. pp. 55-66
  4. full access 
  1. Heroes and Victims Without Villains: Plague in Early Modern Prague
  2. Joshua Teplitsky
  3. pp. 67-76
  4. full access 
  1. Jewish Healers and Yellow Fever in the Eighteenth-Century Americas
  2. Laura Arnold Leibman
  3. pp. 77-90
  4. full access 
  1. Writing Against Loss: Moroccan Jewish Book Culture in a Time of Disaster
  2. Yigal S. Nizri
  3. pp. 91-100
  4. full access 
  1. “Jewish Fever”: Myths and Realities in the History of Russia’s Typhus Epidemic, 1914–22
  2. Polly Zavadivker
  3. pp. 101-112
  4. full access 
  1. Israel’s Shaar Ha’aliya Camp through the Lens of COVID-19: Does the History of Quarantine Matter?
  2. Rhona Seidelman
  3. pp. 113-121
  4. full access 
  1. AIDS Was Our Earthquake: American Jewish Responses to the AIDS Crisis, 1985–92
  2. Gregg Drinkwater
  3. pp. 122-142
  4. full access 
  1. “Hands Up! Don’t Shoot! We Want Summer Camp!”: Orthodox Jewry in the Age of COVID-19 and Black Lives Matter
  2. Joshua Shanes
  3. pp. 143-155
  4. full access 
  1. Flashbacks and Foreshadows at the Ends of Empire: Lessons from the Periphery to a Collapsing Center
  2. Evelyn María Dean-Olmsted
  3. pp. 156-180
  4. full access 
  1. Lessons of Hurricane Katrina for American Jews, 2020 Edition
  2. Karla Goldman
  3. pp. 181-191
  4. full access 

About zjb

Zachary Braiterman is Professor of Religion in the Department of Religion at Syracuse University. His specialization is modern Jewish thought and philosophical aesthetics. http://religion.syr.edu
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