The Jews of Pinsk, 1506-1880 is the first part of a major scholarly project about a small city in Eastern Europe where Jews were a majority of the population from the end of the eighteenth century. Pinsk boasted both traditional rabbinic scholars and famous Hasidic figures, and over time became an international trade emporium, a center of the Jewish Enlightenment, a cradle of Zionism and the Jewish Labor movement, and a place where Orthodoxy struggled vigorously with modernity.
The two volumes of Pinsk history were originally part of a literature created by Jews who survived the Holocaust and were determined to keep in memory a vital world that flourished for half a millennium. In this case, the results are extraordinary: no town of Eastern Europe has been described in such fascinating detail, invaluable to Jewish and non-Jewish historians alike.
For the second volume of this two-volume collection, see The Jews of Pinsk, 1881-1941.
About the author
Mordechai Nadav is a leading Israeli scholar of Eastern European Jewry. His Hebrew version of this volume was published in 1973. Mark Mirsky is Professor of English at the City College of New York and Editor of the literary magazine, Fiction. Moshe Rosman is Professor of Jewish History at Bar Ilan University, Israel. His books include Founder of Hasidism (1996 in English, 1999 in Hebrew), winner of The National Jewish Book Award (1996) and of The Shazar Prize for Best Book in Jewish History (2000).