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Weinstein-Minkoff Lecture in Israel Studies
April 26 @ 4:00 pm - 5:30 pm
The 2022 Weinstein-Minkoff Lecture in Israel Studies
“Palestine as Possibility: Polish Jews and the Yishuv as Fact in the 1930s”
Kenneth B. Moss
University of Chicago
Tuesday, April 26, 2022
4:00 – 5:30 PM
Pyle Center, 7020 Langdon St.
In the 1920s and 1930s, socialists, integrationists, traditionalists, Diasporists, Zionists, and anti-Zionists competed for the hearts and minds of Poland’s three million Jews. A central stake in this bitter political struggle was the question of Palestine. Yet beneath this noisy ideological struggle, a different history was unfolding, as hundreds of thousands of Polish Jews began to negotiate new kinds of relationships to Palestine’s Jewish community—relationships defined neither by Zionist nor anti-Zionist ideological certainties, but rather by attitudes of curiosity, personal connection, or urgent critical inquiry. In this talk, Kenneth Moss will investigate how Polish Jews who were previously distant from any version of Zionism, or even hostile to it, were moved to ask how the new kind of kind of Jewish community and polity emerging in the Middle East might be relevant to their future.
Co-sponsored by the Department of History, Middle East Studies, and the Center for Russia, East Europe, and Central Asia.