The 2013 Early Modern Workshop on “Jews and Violence in the Early Modern Period” sought to contextualize violence involving Jews in the early modern period. Violence was an important part of the Jews' premodern experience, but all too frequently Jews have only been seen as victims of violence. Participating scholars tried not only to complicate this over-simplified notion of Jews as victims of violence in the premodern period by examining primary sources from the early modern period, and asking the following questions:

a) based on criminal records, the extent of violence involving Jews in various regions and, indirectly, indications of the level of Jewish participation in the underworld of the time;

b) based on court records and legislation concerning violence by and against Jews, how changing legal definition of, and practice towards, violent crime (Gewaltkriminalität) affected Jews in various regions and in various legal systems

c) by comparing violence against Jews with other forms of religiously inspired violence in the period, the position of Jews within the larger society and understand whether the scholarly literature about the inner logic of intolerance and violence in this period applies also to the situation of Jews;

d) by examining records of mass, or mob, violence against Jews, the difference between ritualized social practices (à la charivari), mob riots (Fettmilch riots; Jud Süss execution?), and structured, institutionally sponsored violent rituals (autos da fé; public executions);

e) by examining representations of violence by and against Jews in both Jewish and non-Jewish sources, how Jews and how the outside State/society perceived of Jews as perpetrators or victims.

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Sunday, August 18th
2:00 PM

2013 EMW: Jews and Violence in the Early Modern Period

EMW 2013, University of Maryland - College Park

University of Maryland, College park

2:00 PM - 2:00 PM

4:15 PM

Killed or Be Killed. Realities and Representations of Violence in Seventeenth-century Ukraine

Adam Teller, Brown University

University of Maryland, College Park, MD

4:15 PM - 6:15 PM

Monday, August 19th
9:00 AM

Plague and Violence against Jews in Early Modern Europe

Samuel Cohn, University of Glasgow

University of Maryland, College Park, MD

9:00 AM - 10:00 AM

10:00 AM

Eschatological Avengers or Messianic Saviors? Violence and Physical Strength in the Vernacular Legend of the Red Jews

Rebekka Voss, Goethe-Universität, Frankfurt

University of Maryland, College Park, MD

10:00 AM - 11:00 AM

11:30 AM

Rome, 1571: A Body and a Murder Investigation in the Ghetto

Serena di Nepi, Sapienza Università di Roma

11:30 AM - 12:30 PM

1:30 PM

La Mala Sangre: daily violence within the Western Sephardic Diaspora

Daniel Strum, Universidade de São Paulo

1:30 PM - 2:30 PM

2:30 PM

Jewish Violence in Polish Laws and Courts

Jerzy Mazur, Université de Nantes

2:30 PM - 3:30 PM

4:00 PM

Big Blows on a Small Stage: Records of Violence in Jewish communal registers, Altona 1765-1776

Elisheva Carlebach, Columbia University

University of Maryland, College Park, MD

4:00 PM - 5:00 PM

5:00 PM

A Jewish Perspective on the Execution of 'Jew Süss': 4 February 1738

Yair Mintzker, Princeton University

University of Maryland, College Park, MD

5:00 PM - 6:00 PM

Tuesday, August 20th
9:00 AM

The murder of a travel companion. Violence, gender and living conditions of servants in 18th century Prussia

Noa Sophie Kohler, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev

University of Maryland, College Park, MD

9:00 AM - 10:00 AM

10:00 AM

Exorcism and Violence: Contexts Internal and External

Yohanan Petrovsky-Stern, Northwestern University

University of Maryland, College Park, MD

10:00 AM - 11:00 AM

12:00 PM

Violence at a Purim Ball

Francesca Bregoli, Queens College (CUNY)

University of Maryland, College Park, MD

12:00 PM - 1:00 PM