Yuri Lvovich Slezkine is a Russian-born American historian, writer, and translator . He is a professor of Russian history and Director of the Institute of Slavic, East European, and Eurasian Studies at the University of California, Berkeley. He is best known as the author of the book The Jewish Century () and. The Jewish Century has ratings and 23 reviews. Michael said: This book was But it underscores Yuri Slezkine’s provocative thesis. Not only have Jews. But it underscores Yuri Slezkine’s provocative thesis. Not only have Jews adapted better than many other groups to living in the modern world, they have.

Author: Kejind Fenrigul
Country: Burundi
Language: English (Spanish)
Genre: Marketing
Published (Last): 10 April 2014
Pages: 340
PDF File Size: 14.15 Mb
ePub File Size: 14.40 Mb
ISBN: 395-7-15373-707-1
Downloads: 16095
Price: Free* [*Free Regsitration Required]
Uploader: Zulkilkis

Rappoport, the deputy head of construction and of the Gulag; and N. To ask other readers questions about The Jewish Centuryplease sign up. It manages to give the impression that it unsettles regnant Jewish notions of specialness while also, quite dexterously, massaging them.

Slezkine argues that the Jews were, in effect, among the world’s first free agents. Among the men entrusted with carrying out the order were Sverdlov head of the the All-Russian Central Executive Committee in Moscow, formerly an assistant pharmacistShaia Goloshchekin the commissar of the Urals Military District, formerly a dentistand Yakov Yurovsky the Chekist who directed the execution and later claimed to have personally shot the tsar, formerly a watchmaker and photographer.

David rated it really liked it Mar 13, Since no group has been more adept at Mercurianism than the Jews, he contends, these exemplary slzkine are now model moderns.

The Appolonians, of course, are strongly rooted in the land and involved in stationary agrarian practices. slezkije

The assertion is, of course, metaphorical. Slezkine leaves us with this: Yuri Slezkine dedicates the book to his grandmother: Modernization is, in other words, about everyone becoming Jewish.


The Jewish Century

In Slezkine’s opinion, everyone is becoming Jewish. Their role, Slezkine argues, was part of a broader division of human labor between what he calls Mercurians-entrepreneurial minorities–and Apollonians–food-producing majorities.

Generously ready to concede that the second thing might sometimes go wrong, they nevertheless earn their living from reminding the first thing that freedom is an illusion. This profound, absorbing history is a narrative masterpiece. He generalizes the jweish division of labor with the following binary: And it is a book too acutely aware of its own audacity: The cycles of history keep rollking along – I note the fearful reactions of the fellow-graduate students of one of the earlier reviewers of this book, who all agreed that it is “too essentialist.

It is often suggested that Jewish advancement in Russia was blocked by the quotas introduced in the s. He notes that Jews have adapted to the modern world from written record-keeping onward better than many other groups. Otto Snaps rated it it was amazing May 19, Marxism and Freudianism, for example, sprang largely from the Jewish predicament, Slezkine notes, and both Soviet Bolshevism and American liberalism were affected in fundamental ways by the Jewish exodus from the Pale of Settlement.

Not only have Jews adapted better than many other groups to living in the modern world, they have become the premiere symbol and This masterwork of interpretative history begins with a bold declaration: Tzan rated it it was ok Sep 06, Don’t have an account?

Yuri Slezkine – Wikipedia

But it underscores Yuri Slezkine’s provocative thesis. Slezkine himself does slezkien an odd relationship to Jewishness and identity, which surely informs this book. Yuri Slezkine is a professor of history at the University of California who in this book looks for the place of Jews in the modern world, or at least in the modern world of the last years.

Its assumptions and methods are unconventional, and yet, it proves to be a refreshingly interesting and successful exercise in approaching history in a more grand narrative way that has some fruitful results.


Philip Salgannik rated it really liked it Dec 06, So the confidently inserted forward slash is a mark of falsification, not punctuation. In fact, Slezkine argues, modernity is all about Apollonians becoming Mercurians–urban, mobile, literate, articulate, intellectually intricate, physically fastidious, and occupationally flexible. Moreover, the rest of us in the tye world are abandoning our “Apollonianism” and becoming more like Mercurians.

He uses the interesting figure of Hermes as the symbol for what he calls “service nomadism,” which he says is now the norm in modern culture. Kogan, the head of construction, M. University of California, Berkeley. Since the dawning of the Modern Age, Mercurians have taken center stage.

Not onl this book is blowing my little mind and typing together my understanding of the rise of Modernism with the role of the Jews. The full text of this book review is only available to subscribers of the London Review of Books.

Refresh and try again. I read it in manuscript form, and was blown away. With his metaphorical assertion that we [modern men and women] are all Jews, he invites us on a mental reconceptualization of the world to slezmine understand it even if by so doing we are distorting some rather large variations in human experience.

This division is, according to him, recurring in preth century societies. I have no idea what discipline I would consider it. More than a million first-generation emigrants from the Pale were living elsewhere in the Soviet Union, mainly the big cities, at the outbreak of the Second World War.