The World Centre for Jewish Music in Palestine, 1936-1940: Jewish Musical Life on the Eve of World War II

By Philip V. Bohlman | Go to book overview

ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS

DURING the decade I have worked on this book, my debt to others has become enormous. As an ethnomusicologist with a historical bent, I am wont to investigate the history evident in the documents in this book by penetrating beyond the names, the facts, and the dates that the documents allow one to catalogue. I began, then, to search for other histories than those immediately evident on the surface of the documents themselves. In other words, I found myself wanting to undertake a sort of field-work to find out more about the individuals themselves and the ideas that their voices in this book expressed. The research and writing of the book, however, took place a half-century after the events that brought about the World Centre for Jewish Music in Palestine, and this hastened and intensified my attempts to find out more about those who still lived or who remembered the writers of the following documents. I cannot list all those who shared with me their memories of the musical life in Israel during the 1930s, but there are those to whose reflections and help this book is especially indebted.

My research on this book began in 1981 when Israel Adler, director of the Jewish Music Research Centre at the University and National Library, Jerusalem, urged me to unravel the documents that constitute the archive of the World Centre for Jewish Music in Palestine. I am grateful to Prof. Adler for this initial suggestion, as well as the opportunity to formulate the research, first as an article for "Yuval" ( Bohlman 1986a) and then as a book for the Yuval Monograph Series, which eventually became the first version of the present book. My research at the Jewish Music Research Centre was only possible because of the generous and ever-cheerful assistance of Helen Shemaria, who assisted in the original cataloguing. Lea Shalem always prodded me with critical questions about the WCJMP materials, and her questions succeeded in making me think in new ways about the materials. Early phases of this research benefited considerably from several grants. A grant from Dr K. Grunwald supported the initial cataloguing of the archival materials. A fellowship from the Memorial Foundation for Jewish Culture made it possible for me to spend the summer of 1983 working intensively in Jerusalem on the initial plans and sketches for the book itself. Many thanks to these foundations.

As I conferred with individuals in Israel and elsewhere who had been

-xiv-

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The World Centre for Jewish Music in Palestine, 1936-1940: Jewish Musical Life on the Eve of World War II
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Preface vii
  • Acknowledgements xiv
  • Contents xvii
  • List of Illustrations xxiv
  • List of Abbreviations xxv
  • Glossary xxvi
  • Note on the Translations xxix
  • Introduction 1
  • Part I - European Roots 23
  • 1 - Organizing the Wcjmp in the Diaspora 25
  • 2 - Organizing the Wcjmp Abroad 54
  • 3: Social Conditions for Jewish Musicians in Germany and Europe 78
  • Part II - The Search for Fertile Soil in a New Homeland 113
  • 4 - History of the Wcjmp 115
  • 5 - Financial Endeavours of the Wcjmp 136
  • 6 - Musica Hebraica 158
  • Part III - Toward a New Musical Culture in Palestine and Israel 173
  • 7 - Musical Life in Palestine During the 1930s 175
  • 8 - Aesthetics of Jewish Music 204
  • Epilogue the Music History of the Wcjmp: 'Clues to a Puzzle, a Meaning to the Meaningless' 237
  • Appendix 261
  • Bibliography 275
  • Index 287
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