Being Jewish in Birobidzhan: Sociological Aspects
EAJ Policy Papers, No 28 (17 December 2019)
Established 85 years ago, the Jewish Autonomous Region of the Russian Federation (JAR) is not only the long-standing symbol of the local national-territorial solution of the “ewish question” in the USSR inherited by post-Soviet Russia, but, in fact, the unique project of the “territorialist” model of national self-determination for the Jewish people in the world. Stalinist’s repressions of 1930s and 1948-1953, substantially undermined this idea, while mass Jewish emigration of 1990s and 2000s made the future of the Birobidzhan project questionable. However, as our comprehensive sociological study shows (March-April 2019), we still deal with an “island” of specific provincial Jewish identity model accompanied with a complexed combination of material and mental institutes and structures.
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