Jewish Icons: Art and Society in Modern Europe

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University of California Press, Apr 11, 1998 - Art - 382 pages
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With the help of over one hundred illustrations spanning three centuries, Richard Cohen investigates the role of visual images in European Jewish history. The interaction of Jews with the visual arts takes place, as Cohen says, in a vast gallery of prints, portraits, books, synagogue architecture, ceremonial art, modern Jewish painting and sculpture, political broadsides, monuments, medals, and memorabilia. Pointing to recent scholarship that overturns the stereotype of Jews as people of the text, unconcerned with the visual, Cohen shows how the coming of the modern period expanded the relationship of Jews to the visual realm far beyond the religious context. Toward the end of the nineteenth century, the study and collecting of Jewish art became a legitimate and even passionate pursuit, and signaled the entry of Jews into the art world as painters, collectors, and dealers.
  

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Contents

The Visual Image of the Jew and Judaism
8
Ceremonial Art Patronage and Taste
66
The Rabbi as Icon
112
Nostalgia and The Return to the Ghetto
152
SelfExposure SelfImage and Memory
184
Images of Jewish Fate
218
Epilogue
254
Notes
259
Bibliography
317
Index
347
Copyright

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Page 6 - You shall not make for yourself a graven image, or any likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth...
Page vii - She opens her mouth with wisdom, and the teaching of kindness is on her tongue. She looks well to the ways of her household, and does not eat the bread of idleness. Her children rise up and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praises her: "Many women have done excellently, but you surpass them all.

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About the author (1998)

Richard I. Cohen is Professor of Jewish History at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. His previous books include Burden of Conscience: French-Jewish Leadership during the Holocaust (1987).

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