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A Mosaic Of Fragmented Identities: The Sephardim In Latin America

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Chapter Summary

This chapter uses the term Sephardim in a broad sense that includes all the non-Ashkenazi sectors. It stresses, however, the fragmented character of this complex ethnic group that was textured by different sub-groups: Caribbean Jews of Portuguese ancestry, Sephardim from Turkey and the Balkan countries, Middle Eastern Jews from Aleppo, Damascus, Lebanon and Palestine, North Africans from Morocco and Egypt and small groups of Sephardim from Italy and other countries in Europe. The objective of the chapter is to analyze the identity of the Sephardim in Latin America according to their ethnic sub-group and to examine the impact of the globalization processes on their particular identities. In the era of globalization and democratization, societies are becoming more pluralistic, incorporating the ethnic minorities and at the same time respecting their diversity. This openness increases the tendencies of assimilation and threatens the cohesion of the sub-ethnic Sephardic groups.

Keywords: Caribbean Jews; globalization; Latin America; non-Ashkenazi sectors; Sephardic communities; Sephardim



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