Torah against the Virus, Rabbis against the Government: Ultra-Orthodoxy Facing the Pandemic

The paper discusses a number of the most remarkable responses to the COVID‑19 pandemic and to the social isolation measures coming from several, mostly ultra‑Orthodox, Jewish communities in Israel, the United States, and Russia.

Sectarian, Missionary, Philanthropist: A Microhistory of the Orenburg Sabbaterian Pyotr Maklakov

Drawing upon materials from the State Archive of the Orenburg Region, the article reconstructs the biography, religious views and practices of the peasant Pyotr Maklakov, who “dropped out of Orthodoxy into the Sabbaterian sect” and actively propagated “the Jewish faith” among the inhabitants of the Orenburg district in the late 19th — early 20th centuries.

«Century-Old Prejudice» and «Siberian Mentality»: Micro- history of the Mid-Nineteenth Century Case of Insulting the Priest Aleksey Orlov by the Jews of Tomsk

The paper offers a micro‑history study of the case of insulting the Orthodox priest Aleksey Orlov by the Jewish merchants Isai and Leonty Prezman and Moise Haimovich in Tomsk, 1858–1863. The paper draws upon the archival sources from the State Historical Archive of the Omsk Region. It explores the materials of the trial, the correspondence between the Governor‑General of Western Siberia and the Tomsk Civil Governor, copies of the Senate’s decisions, numerous petitions of the defendants and their relatives.

“Blessed Are You, Who Has (Not) Made Me a Woman”? Feminist Turn in Judaism and Jewish Studies

The article presents a review of the scholarship published in the last half-century that constitutes the feminist turn in Judaism and Jewish studies and analyzes the causes and the main trends of this phenomenon, in particular, the practice of combining academic research and public activism. The first part of this review examines feminist criticism of Judaism and feminist theorizing aimed at gender reform of contemporary Judaism. The second part analyzes research that recovers women’s presence in Biblical, Talmudic, and medieval Judaism.

D.A. Chwolson as an Expert Witness and Student of Abraham Geiger: Three Chapters from a Scientific Biography

This article is based on unpublished sources from St. Petersburg archives (the Manuscript Department of the Russian National Library, the St. Petersburg Branch of the Archive of the Russian Academy, and the Russian State Historical Archive). It explores the forms and methods of Daniel Chwolson’s (1819–1911) work on academic protection for the Jewish minority. Apart from his well-known effort to refute blood libel accusations that spanned five decades (1861–1911), Chwolson’s activities on behalf of Jews included less obvious projects and approaches.

From Evrei to Iudei: Turning or Returning to Faith?

A Portrait on the Wall and Sprat on the Bread: Moscow Jews between the Two "Sects"

Religious Freedom and the German Circumcision Debate

“The Whole Life with Books”: the Soviet Jewry’s Journey from the Bible to the Library

Based on the extensive collection of interviews with Soviet, mostly Ukrainian, Jews born before World War II, the essay examines changes in their reading experience and reading priorities from Bible-centered religious booklore to kulturnost’ — a broad bookish culture of the Soviet intelligentsia.