The notion of "Libyan Jewry" and its cultural-historical complexity

 Goldberg, Harvey

 Professor of Sociology and Anthropology, Hebrew University of Jerusalem

Mise en ligne : 05/07/2010

Type d'activités : Colloque

Format : Vidéo

Durée en mn : 00:21:01

Langue : Français

Discipline : Anthropologie

Domaines d'intérêt : Communautés; Migrations; Récits de soi

Mots-clés : Juifs de Libye; Judaïté

Couverture géographique : Maghreb; Libye; Israël; Italie

Couverture chronologique :  

Institution(s) :  

Personne(s) :  



Outside of Tel Aviv, in Or Yehudah, there stands a building with sign describing it as The Heritage House of Libyan Jewry.  The notion of "Libyan Jewry," however, is not one that may be taken for granted.  There were various understandings and terms through which Jews in historic Libya perceived themselves vis-à-vis non-Jewish neighbors, other Jews-whether from their own region or from Italy, and the states that ruled over them.  These reflected attachment to local communities and distinct urban centers (Tripoli or Benghazi), three religions  (Judaism, Islam, and Christianity), several languages or dialects (Arabic, their own Judeo-Arabic, Berber and Italian), as well as the historical shifts associated with Italian colonial rule, the formation of an independent Libya, and emigration of the majority of the Jews – mostly to Israel.  It was this migration that gave the greatest push for the Jews to seek for an overarching set of terms with which to view themselves, while the process of growing self-awareness as a sub-group of Jews can be traced from the beginning of the 20th century.  The proposed paper follows this evolution through written forms of self-expression, some photographic documentation, and also through the developing and ever-changing process of self-presentation found within the Or Yehudah Heritage House and the exhibits contained within it.  It shows that even today, the notion of  "Libyan Jew" is fluid, may be given a variety of emphases (including differences between Israeli and Italian contexts), and may contain seeds of future meanings not yet given strong expression.


 Goldberg, Harvey, The notion of "Libyan Jewry" and its cultural-historical complexity ,
in : Mediamed. Ressources multimedia en sciences humaines sur la Méditerranée , Chaîne : Migrations, identité et modernité au Maghreb , Migrations, identité et modernité au Maghreb