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Jews, Europe, and the Business of Culture


The five articles included in this special issue borrow ideas from the cultural-business history approach and thus enter the ‘business turn’ in Jewish studies by focusing on different expressions of Jewish entrepreneurship and economic activities, and their effects and constraints, in modern Europe. The authors explore the correlation between Jewish businesses and local, national and European developments, ask how Europe’s historical relationship to Jews affected the everyday running of a Jewish business, and discuss how the business itself was used as a platform for cultural navigations with non-Jewish majorities. In other words, they provide examples of how businesses, apart from their role for economic survival and success, were activated for social and cultural purposes, and thus provide a window into the concrete reality of Jewish responses to and participation in a Europe with changing political, socio-cultural and national landscapes. Together, they speak to the Jewish experience of migration, national belonging, modernity and discrimination in modern Europe.


Maja Hultman, Benito Peix Geldart and Anders Houltz (eds.). 2023. Special issue 'Jews, Europe, and the Business of Culture.' Jewish Culture and History 24/1. 

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