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Jewish Budapest: Monuments, Rites, History [Hardcover]

By Geza Komoroczy (Author), Viktoria Pusztai (Author) & Andrea Strbik (Author)
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Item description for Jewish Budapest: Monuments, Rites, History by Geza Komoroczy, Viktoria Pusztai & Andrea Strbik...

As a painting by Chagall unfolds layer upon layer when viewed carefully, so does the city in Jewish Budapest. Neither a guidebook or a history in the traditional sense, this book is about the Jewish face of Budapest from medieval times to the present. To get the broadest possible perspective, this book is not only about the Hungarian capital as a Jewish city but, as befits a cosmopolitan metropolis, delves into its myriad elements. There was and is, as Jewish Budapest strikingly reveals, a Roman and a Greek - Catholic Budapest, a Lutheran and a Calvinist Budapest, a German, a Serbian and a Gypsy Budapest. All these are brought into play as backdrop to the main narrative about the history of Jews in Buda, Obuda, and Pest. Past and present Jewish life as an organic part of the life of the Hungarian capital Budapest - be it memory or living reality.

Richly illustrated with wonderfully evocative literary line drawings and photos, the book includes a lavish, full-colour section of artwork that enhances the text. Here is a book at once personal and universal. It is about everyday Jewish life, the humor, the pathos, the human condition, which is the same or very similar anywhere in the Diaspora. Every image and incident, every happening is filtered through the strong sensibilities of the key citizens of the city throughout the past few centuries. Remarkable citizens personified by the likes of Theodor Herzl and Joseph Pulitzer.

The city is itself the central character of this book. The authors write only about those parts where there is a story to tell. They talk about places where history is still visible, where it can be located, where its traces still exist, where it can be tasted, savoured, and where it surrounds us as part of life in Budapest today.

Jewish Budapest amasses huge amounts of lore about the city, its monuments and relics, its language and scholarship, its cultural heart, and its intellectual core. Jewish Budapest proceeds according to the chronological sequence of the birth of the Jewish quarters in the city, focusing on patterns of settlement and occupation, and demography, and unfolds finally into a vision of the future of Jewish life in this remarkably vibrant, venerable city.

The book includes a section of detailed comments on the illustrations with an explanation of the abbreviations throughout as well as a bibliography, an index of personal names, an index of cities and towns, and an index of Budapest street addresses.

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Item Specifications...

Studio: Central European University Press
Pages   597
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 11.15" Width: 8.24" Height: 1.31"
Weight:   3.66 lbs.
Binding  Hardcover
Publisher   Central European University Press
ISBN  9639116386  
ISBN13  9789639116382  

Availability  0 units.

More About Geza Komoroczy, Viktoria Pusztai & Andrea Strbik

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Product Categories

1Books > Subjects > History > Asia
2Books > Subjects > History > Europe > Austria
3Books > Subjects > History > Europe > England > General
4Books > Subjects > History > Europe > England
5Books > Subjects > History > Europe > Germany > General
6Books > Subjects > History > Europe > Germany
7Books > Subjects > History > Europe > Hungary
8Books > Subjects > History > Historical Study > Reference
9Books > Subjects > History > Jewish > General
10Books > Subjects > History > Jewish
11Books > Subjects > History > World > General

Reviews - What do customers think about Jewish Budapest: Monuments, Rites, History?

Breathing Life into Your Tour of Budapest  Jan 19, 2001
Budapest today bustles, driven by efforts to integrate the formely communist country into Nato and the European Union. The beautiful buildings, bridges and sites dating back to the Austo-Hungarian Empire of the 1800's surprise many tourists from the West. But without knowing the history of this city the tourist has only a fraction of the enjoyment. Jewish Budapest chronicals the long history of Jews in this part of Hungary, working their way from a marginal existance literally on the edge of town to an integral part of Budapest. From this community came Theodore Hertzel, a founder of the Zionist Movement to create a Jewish state in Israel. One of the leading Rabbi's of early Reform Judaism in America served as Rabbi at a Temple in Budapest before emigrating to the freedom of the United States. Although not emancipated until about the 1870's, Budapest's Jewish community achieved remarkable progress in the late 19th and early 20th centuries in this ethnically diverse city. Before World War II, Jews comprised around 25% of the Budapest population including leading industrialists, entertainers, businessmen, doctors, scholars, and civic leaders. Now there are only about 70,000 Jews left. The majestic Dohaney Street Temple, built to the dimensions of the Temple in Jerusalem, stands today as the largest temple in Europe, seating some 3,200 worshipers in a beautifuly restored sanctuary. Jewish Budapest tells about the Jewish community that built this and a number of other temples and synagoges. Architectual information is given about office buildings, schools, apartment building and more that still line Budapest streets. The author goes behind the brick and mortar to tell about the daily lives of the people who lived in the community and how they changed over the centuries. The author includes includes an account of the catastrophe that befell the Jewish community at the hands of various fascist groups during World War II and the heroic efforts of Christians like Raul Wallenberg that saved many thousand men, women and children from the Nazis. Jewish Budapest also describes much about Judaism as practiced in Europe, not just ritual, but also daily lives of the Jews and personalties and conflicts during the centuries within the community and with their neigbors. The religious information is basic enough so that it can be understood by people with little or no knowledge of Judaism and yet interesting for those well familiar with Jewish ritual and customs. I especially recommend this book to people going to Budapest, people who have visited the city, people with ties to Hungary and history buffs.

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