The Jewish community of Egypt in modem times-now practically non-existent-consisted in part of autochthonous Jews who traced their origins to the periods of Maimonides, Philo, and even the prophet Jeremiah, thus making it the oldest community in the Jewish Diaspora. It also contained Jews who were part of the waves of immigration into Egypt that began in the second half of the nineteenth century. Coming mostly from Mediterranean countries, this predominantly Sephardic community maintained a network of commercial, social, and religious ties throughout the entire region, as well as a distinctively Mediterranean culture and life-style. In this volume, international scholars examine the Ottoman background of this community, the political status and participation of the Jews in Egyptian society, their role in economic life, their contributions to Egyptian-Arabic culture, and the images of the community in their own eyes, as well as in the eyes of Egyptians and Palestinian Jews. The book includes an extensive set of appendixes that illustrate the wide range of primary sources used by the contributors.
Table of Contents
PART 1 THE OTTOMAN BACKGROUND PART 2 POLITICAL COMMUNITY, PART 3 ECONOMIC ACTIVITIES PART 4 CULTURAL PARTICIPATION PART 5 INTERNAL DIVERSITY PART 6 IMAGES OF EGYPTIAN JEWRY
Shimon Shamir holds the Kaplan Chair in the History of Egypt and Israel at Tel Aviv University.