Refugees or Migrants
Pre-Modern Jewish Population Movement
- ISBN: 9780300218572
- Published By: Yale University Press
- Published: January 2019
A leading historian argues that historically Jews were more often voluntary migrants than involuntary refugees?
For millennia, Jews and non-Jews alike have viewed forced population movement as a core aspect of the Jewish experience. This involuntary Jewish wandering has been explained by pre-modern Jews and Christians as divine punishment, by some modern non-Jews as the result of Jewish harmfulness, by some modern Jews as fostered by Christian anti-Jewish imagery, and by other modern Jews as caused by misguided Jewish acceptance of minority status.
In this absorbing book, Robert Chazan explores these various perspectives and argues that pre-modern Jewish population movement was in most cases voluntary, the result of a sense among Jews that there were alternatives available for making a better life elsewhere.