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The AJL Podcast brings you the best talks on Jewish literature and the Jewish library world, with respected experts and popular authors. Please check back periodically, as new lectures will be added to the series.


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How Jews Got Their Last Names in Europe in the 18th and 19th Centuries

As part of the process of modernization, modern nation-states found it necessary to require last names for their citizens. The Jews at first resisted, which caused the government to assign names randomly. When this process was finally complete, a class of identifiable Jewish names was generated, resulting int he desire of some Jewish citizens to change their names to escape anti-Semitism.

Presented by Marlene Schiffman at the 2010 Association of Jewish Libraries convention in Seattle, WA.

27 min 26 sec

Posted in: RAS


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