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Jewish Communities on the Ohio RiverA History$
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Amy Hill Shevitz

Print publication date: 2007

Print ISBN-13: 9780813124308

Published to Kentucky Scholarship Online: September 2011

DOI: 10.5810/kentucky/9780813124308.001.0001

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From Europe to the Ohio River Valley

From Europe to the Ohio River Valley

Chapter:
(p.28) CHAPTER 2 From Europe to the Ohio River Valley
Source:
Jewish Communities on the Ohio River
Author(s):

Amy Hill Shevitz

Publisher:
University Press of Kentucky
DOI:10.5810/kentucky/9780813124308.003.0003

This chapter discusses the European Jewish communities along the Ohio River Valley. Those European Jews who chose to migrate to America were heirs to a Jewish culture that had existed for centuries in a situation of complete subservience within medieval Christendom. Despite a number of upheavals during their history, European Jewish communities held together. This was because as separate corporate entities within Christian feudalism, they were permitted to develop their own internal governance, a comprehensive system known as the kehillah. The restrictions placed on Jews helped foster an atmosphere in which self-help and provisions for mutual security sustained a strong and positive Jewish identity.

Keywords:   European Jewish communities, Ohio River Valley, European Jews, Christian feudalism, kehillah, restrictions, Jewish identity

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