Jewish Russians: Upheavals in a Moscow Synagogue

By Wanner, Catherine | Canadian Slavonic Papers, March-June 2004 | Go to article overview

Jewish Russians: Upheavals in a Moscow Synagogue


Wanner, Catherine, Canadian Slavonic Papers


Sascha L. Goluboff. Jewish Russians: Upheavals in a Moscow Synagogue. Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 2003. 199 pp. Map. Glossary. Works Cited. Index. $19.95, paper.

Sascha Goluboff combines two themes that have received tremendous scholarly attention since the fall of the USSR: the role of religion and ethnicity in self-definition and the interrelation between these two factors. By analyzing the everyday workings of life in the multinational Central Synagogue of Moscow, Goluboff illustrates how individual believers balance their own interpretations of themselves as practising Jews and as Russians, Georgians, and Caucasians or Mountain Jews living in Moscow.

This ethnography details many of the dynamics that shift allegiances either to a national or religious group and the effect this has on the overall solidarity of or strains within this synagogue community. Importantly, the book considers how the new moral economy of consumption and emerging class differences affect social bonds. The author also considers the influence of Western religious leaders, such as the French head rabbi, who, against the wishes of many older, long-standing members, places a premium on competing for believers by engaging in outreach to young secular Jews. Finally, by contrasting the values and worship practices of elderly, Russian believers with younger members who are of mixed nationality, the author is able to reveal the values, beliefs and social bonds the Soviet system engendered and alienation between generations.

One of the most original aspects of this ethnography is a reversal of the typical way gender plays out. Usually, community studies of religious groups that embrace traditional gender roles and a strict separation of the sexes inevitably lead to women scholars studying the views and practices of the women members. Although GolubofPs selected community reflects traditional gender divisions, she nonetheless studied the men of the community. Indeed, we learn very little about the women participants in this community. Goluboff s persistence to "observe" morning services by sitting in the corridor behind a half-closed door and her willingness to endure the constant debates as to whether she should cover her head or not (she did with a hat) or whether she had a right as a woman to be present in some shadow form at all or not, truly add a unique dimension that distinguishes this study from other ethnographies of religious communities. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

Jewish Russians: Upheavals in a Moscow Synagogue
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.