Zionists in Interwar Czechoslovakia

Zionists in Interwar Czechoslovakia

Minority Nationalism and the Politics of Belonging
Tatjana Lichtenstein
Distribution: World
Publication date: 3/7/2016
Format: cloth 494 pages, 2 maps, 1 table
6 x 9
ISBN: 978-0-253-01867-0
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This book presents an unconventional history of minority nationalism in interwar Eastern Europe. Focusing on an influential group of grassroots activists, Tatjana Lichtenstein uncovers Zionist projects intended to sustain the flourishing Jewish national life in Czechoslovakia. The book shows that Zionism was not an exit strategy for Jews, but as a ticket of admission to the societies they already called home. It explores how and why Zionists envisioned minority nationalism as a way to construct Jews’ belonging and civic equality in Czechoslovakia. By giving voice to the diversity of aspirations within interwar Zionism, the book offers a fresh view of minority nationalism and state building in Eastern Europe.

Author Bio

Tatjana Lichtenstein is Assistant Professor of History at the University of Texas at Austin.


"It has long been known that unlike elsewhere in East Central Europe, for census purposes, Jews in Czechoslovakia were recognized as a separate nationality as well as a religious group. Tatjana Lichtenstein explores the ramification of this distinction for Zionists and their interactions with this state in important study of Jewish nationalism." —Harriet Pass Freidenreich, Temple University

"[W]ell researched and meticulously cited . . . Recommended." —

"Lichtenstein’s book makes a dynamic contribution to the recent historiography of the Jewish experience in twentieth century." —Hungarian Historical Review

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Table of Contents

List of Place Names
Introduction: Making Jews at Home
1. The Jews of Czechoslovakia—A Mosaic of Cultures
2. Jewish Power and Powerlessness: Zionists, Czechs and the Paris Peace Conference
3. Mapping Jews: Social Science and the Making of Czechoslovak Jewry
4. Conquering Communities: Zionists, Cultural Renewal, and the State
5. A Stateless Nation’s Territory: Zionists and the Jewish Schools
6. Making New Jews: Maccabi in Czechoslovakia
7. Promised Lands: Zionism and Communism in Interwar Czechoslovakia
Epilogue: “A Storm of Barbarism”
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