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Jews and Satlow Paper3 - Alex Mayer Jonathan Wylie Jewish...

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Alex Mayer Jonathan Wylie Jewish Studies 11/16/2008 This chapter argues that "Judaism" as we understand it is largely a product of nineteenth century Germany. Do you agree? Contemporary understanding of Judaism is unquestionably a large product of nineteen- century Germany. While there have been many transformations and adaptations of Judaism throughout its history; to say that 19 th century Germany was not influential to the modern understanding of Judaism would ignore distinct traditions and cultural attributes seen today in different parts of Judaism. Satlow argues “The principles of the Enlightenment, with its focus on the value of the individual and its weakening of the force of tradition, had as much impact on Jews in Germany as it did on non-Jews.” 1 At its core, the Enlightenment was a critical questioning of traditional institutions, customs, and morals. “Was a German Jew like every other German?” 2 In attempting to answer this question, Jews throughout Germany were forced to implement
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