Everyday Jewish Life in Imperial Russia

Select Documents, 1772–1914

Edited by ChaeRan Y. Freeze and Jay M. Harris

This book makes accessible—for the first time in English—declassified archival documents from the former Soviet Union, rabbinic sources, and previously untranslated memoirs, illuminating everyday Jewish life as the site of interaction and negotiation among and between neighbors, society, and the Russian state, from the beginning of the nineteenth century to World War I. Focusing on religion, family, health, sexuality, work, and politics, these documents provide an intimate portrait of the rich diversity of Jewish life. By personalizing collective experience through individual life stories—reflecting not only the typical but also the extraordinary—the sources reveal the tensions and ruptures in a vanished society. An introductory survey of Russian Jewish history from the Polish partitions (1772–1795) to World War I combines with prefatory remarks, textual annotations, and a bibliography of suggested readings to provide a new perspective on the history of the Jews of Russia.

Paper: $45 | E-book: $39.99
ISBN-13: 9781611684551
Pages: 664 | Size: 7 in. x 10 in.
Date Published: December 3, 2013

About the Author

Chaeran Freeze

ChaeRan Y. Freeze is the Frances and Max Elkon Chair in Modern Jewish History at Brandeis University. Jewish Marriage and Divorce in Imperial Russia was a 2000 recipient of the Koret book publication grant.

Jay M. Harris

Jay M. Harris is Harry Austryn Wolfson Professor of Jewish Studies and dean of undergraduate education at Harvard University.