After Expulsion: 1492 and the Making of Sephardic Jewry by Jonathan S. Ray

By Jonathan S. Ray

Honorable point out for the 2014 Jordan Schnitzer booklet award in Medieval and Early smooth Jewish heritage awarded through the organization for Jewish Studies

On August three, 1492, a similar day that Columbus set sail from Spain, the lengthy and excellent heritage of that nation’s Jewish neighborhood formally got here to an in depth. The expulsion of Europe’s final significant Jewish group ended greater than 1000 years of exceptional prosperity, cultural power and highbrow productiveness. but, the concern of 1492 additionally gave upward push to a dynamic and resilient diaspora society spanning East and West.
 
After Expulsion strains a few of the paths of migration and resettlement of Sephardic Jews and Conversos over the process the tumultuous 16th century. Pivotally, the quantity argues that the exiles didn't turn into “Sephardic Jews” in a single day. basically within the moment and 3rd new release did those disparate teams coalesce and undertake a “Sephardic Jewish” identification.
 
After Expulsion offers a brand new and engaging portrait of Jewish society in transition from the medieval to the early glossy interval, a portrait that demanding situations many longstanding assumptions in regards to the variations among Europe and the center East.
 
 

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Eventually, after seizing two of his sons in order to force his conversion, his captors relented and set him free. He was remanded to the custody of a Christian named Juan de Salas, one of several “righteous Gentiles” he mentions. 8 36 << The Long Road into Exile His two sons were not as lucky. 9 Eventually, the two brothers were reunited in the service of the same master and established contact with their father in North Africa via a merchant who acted as an intermediary between Ibn Jamil and the Christian lord.

Relations between Iberian Christians and Muslims thus varied greatly from year to year, and from 24 << Medieval Inheritance one part of the peninsula to another. 41 Jewish fortunes rose and fell upon these same turbulent seas. As a politically neutral and easily controlled minority, Jews were given opportunities to act as diplomats and translators for Christian lords. They also benefited from Christian military and economic successes. Jewish merchants traded in captured Muslim slaves, and they followed Catalan maritime expansion into the Mediterranean.

Conclusion As we search for the roots of the Sephardic Diaspora, it is tempting to accept the collective identity of the Jews as reflected in the Edict of Expulsion, and to imagine Jewish society of medieval Iberia as a relatively unified entity. However, this approach overlooks important features of that society, features that would later determine the initial form of the Sephardic Diaspora and the way that it came to function. Perhaps chief among these was the amorphous structure of the Jewish community.

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