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Chapter Eight Reconsiderations

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Chapter Summary

The appeal of Dubnovism can be examined on several of levels. First it served as the ideological grounding of a small political group among the Russian-Jewish organizations that flourished between 1897 and 1917. Second in its heyday much of Dubnovism expressed underlying attitudes of a growing part of the more than five million Russian Jews who constituted a large percent of the Jews of the world. What led many (but hardly all) Jews in Eastern Europe to relate positively to some psychological aspects of Dubnovism is analyzed in this chapter. Dubnovism was an attempt at a theoretical solution to the mystery of Jewish continuity through the ages. Like other nationalist historians of the later nineteenth and earlier twentieth century, Dubnow's historiography was intertwined with his conception of "what should be done" to insure the socio-political survival of his people.

Keywords: Dubnovism; Eastern Europe; nationalist historians; Russian-Jewish organizations; socio-political survival



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