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Parallel ruptures: Jews of Bessarabia and Transnistria between Romanian nationalism and Soviet communism, 1918-1940

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Title: Parallel ruptures: Jews of Bessarabia and Transnistria between Romanian nationalism and Soviet communism, 1918-1940
Author(s): Tartakovsky, Dmitry
Director of Research: Steinberg, Mark D.
Doctoral Committee Chair(s): Steinberg, Mark D.
Doctoral Committee Member(s): Hitchins, Keith; Koenker, Diane P.; Murav, Harriet; Avrutin, Eugene M.
Department / Program: History
Discipline: History
Degree Granting Institution: University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Degree: Ph.D.
Genre: Dissertation
Subject(s): History Jews Bessarabia Transnistria interwar nationalism communism antisemitism Soviet Union Romania borderlands
Abstract: “Parallel Ruptures: Jews of Bessarabia and Transnistria between Romanian Nationalism and Soviet Communism, 1918-1940,” explores the political and social debates that took place in Jewish communities in Romanian-held Bessarabia and the Moldovan Autonomous Soviet Socialist Republic during the interwar era. Both had been part of the Russian Pale of Settlement until its dissolution in 1917; they were then divided by the Romanian Army’s occupation of Bessarabia in 1918 with the establishment of a well-guarded border along the Dniester River between two newly-formed states, Greater Romania and the Soviet Union. At its core, the project focuses in comparative context on the traumatic and multi-faceted confrontation with these two modernizing states: exclusion, discrimination and growing violence in Bessarabia; destruction of religious tradition, agricultural resettlement, and socialist re-education and assimilation in Soviet Transnistria. It examines also the similarities in both states’ striving to create model subjects usable by the homeland, as well as commonalities within Jewish responses on both sides of the border. Contacts between Jews on either side of the border remained significant after 1918 despite the efforts of both states to curb them, thereby necessitating a transnational view in order to examine Jewish political and social life in borderland regions. The desire among Jewish secular leaders to mold their co-religionists into modern Jews reached across state borders and ideological divides and sought to manipulate respective governments to establish these goals, however unsuccessful in the final analysis. Finally, strained relations between Jews in peripheral borderlands with those at national/imperial cores, Moscow and Bucharest, sheds light on the complex circumstances surrounding the inclusion versus exclusion debates at the heart of all interwar European states and the complicated negotiations that took place within all minority communities that responded to state policies.
Issue Date: 2010-01-06
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/2142/14573
Rights Information: Copyright 2009 by Tartakovsky, Dmitry All rights reserved.
Date Available in IDEALS: 2010-01-06
Date Deposited: December 2
 

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