in english

Illustration: ©Noam Nadav

A Hasidic Spatial Turn

Professor Marcin Wodziński argues that historians have studied Hasidism from a limited perspective, which is surprising considering that it was a movement of enormous cultural significance throughout Eastern Europe, and that it shaped modern thinking about Ashkenazi Jews in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. (…) Researchers, unfamiliar with the geography of the region, found it difficult to assign traditional names to places that fell within the borders of modern Poland or Ukraine. The Historical Atlas of Hasidism remedies this type of methodological error by firmly embedding key questions of Hasidism in a spatial turn.

A satirical look at women's position in Hasidism. Illustration: ©Noam Nadav

Hasidism: An Elite Men’s Club

Professor Marcin Wodziński: „The great tsadikim could afford not to deal with women, which does not mean that there weren’t exceptions. Such unprecedented meetings could even raise a tsadik’s prestige: if he agreed to meet a woman, it meant that she was no ordinary woman, but the Shekhina, the divine presence of God”.