Judaica Bohemiae 52/2
A new issue of the journal Judaica Bohemiae (Vol. 52/2017, 2) came out at the end of December 2017. The opening study, by Pavel Sládek, provides new insights into one of the most important figures in 16th-century rabbinic culture, Rabbi Judah Lev ben Bezalel (the Maharal). On the basis of hitherto neglected sources, it formulates hypotheses in an attempt to bridge the gaps in our knowledge of the Maharal’s views and of how he was perceived by his contemporaries. In the following study, Iveta Cermanová deals with the genesis, reception and impact of the so-called Ramschak Chronicle – a notorious forgery on the history of the Jews of Bohemia, dating from the early 1820s. Drawing on a crucial assessment of the chronicle by Salomon Hugo Lieben, it presents new findings about the forgery, particularly with regard to the history of how it was received and to its author’s biographical details and motivation. The last of the main studies, by Martha Stellmacher, is titled In Search of the Original Tunes: The ‘Collection of Old Prague Synagogue Chants’ by Siegmund Schul and Salomon Lieben in 1935–1941. It features a project involving the transcription and analysis of old Prague synagogue chants that was carried out before the Shoah. Reflecting on the broader context of Jewish musicology from this period, it deals with the genesis, methods and objectives of this project on the basis of a previously unpublished collection of Old Prague Synagogue Chants, as well as other archival sources and eye-witness interviews.
In the ‘Reports’ section, Agnes Kelemen provides information about the conference “New Approaches to the History of the Jews under Communism”, which was held in Prague in May 2017 by the Institute of Contemporary History, Czech Academy of Sciences. The final section of the journal contains reviews of the following books: K dějinám Židů v českých zemích [On the History of the Jews in the Bohemian Lands] by Lenka Matušíková (reviewed by A. Putík), Arnošt Frischer and the Jewish Politics of Early 20th-Century Europe by Jan Láníček (reviewed by Rebekah Klein-Pejšová), Budování státu bez antisemitismu? Násilí, diskurz loajality a vznik Československa [Building a State without Antisemitism? Violence, Discourse of Loyalty, and the Making of Czechoslovakia] by Miloslav Szabó and Michal Frankl (reviewed by Frank Hadler), Die Judenverfolgung im Protektorat Böhmen und Mähren. Lokale Initiativen, zentrale Entscheidungen, jüdische Antworten 1939–1945 by Wolf Gruner (reviwed by Vojtěch Blodig), Nationale Helden und jüdische Opfer. Tschechische Repräsentationen des Holocaust by Peter Hallama (Blanka Soukupová) and Friedrich Feigl: 1884–1965, edited by Nicholas Sawicky (reviewed by Mahulena Nešlehová).
Published since 1965 by the Jewish Museum in Prague, Judaica Bohemiae focuses on Jewish history and culture in Bohemia, Moravia and the wider Central European area (the territory of the former Habsburg Monarchy). The journal is indexed and abstracted in the Arts and Humanities Citation Index (Web of Science), Scopus, and the European Reference Index for the Humanities (ERIH PLUS). The texts are published in English and German.