NOTE: All information from the folkhögskola will be sent in Swedish.
BALTIC JEWISH HISTORY: LITHUANIA AND LATVIA IN FOCUS (ONLINE)
Join us for a course about Jewish History in the Baltic region. The course will focus on two particular countries: Lithuania and Latvia.
We will discuss the dynamics of forming and developing of the Jewish community in the context of several centuries of turbulent geopolitical history of Lithuania, from the Great Duchy of Lithuania and Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth through the Tsarist Empire, Independent Lithuania and Polish rule of Vilnius area in the twentieth century , two Soviet occupations -before and after the Holocaust, and current period. Special attention will be paid to the social and cultural life of the Jewish community.
Speaking of Latvia, we will discuss the diversity of the Jewish community, which was formed by both Eastern European and Western European Jews, the influence of political and economical developments on 19th century, including rise of nationalism and socialism among the Jews – as much as among their neighbours; the calamities of the WWI and the ups and downs during the independent Latvian Republic, as well as the tragedies of Soviet and Nazi occupations, and the complicated post-WWII development.
The course is given in English, in collaboration with the Lithuanian National Martynas Mažvydas Library, Department in the National Library of Lithuania, Museum “Jews in Latvia” and Paideia – The European Institute for Jewish Studies in Sweden.
To apply for this course, you need basic computer skills and knowledge of how to use the digital platform Zoom. The school offers Zoom manuals and a training opportunity before the start of the course.
Course material is included in the cost for this course.
Dr. Lara Lempert is the head of the Judaica Research Center at the Documentary Heritage Department in the National Library of Lithuania and the curator of its Judaica collection. Herfields of expertise are Jewish classical texts and the cultural history of the European andLithuanian Jewry. She is an author of numerous articles and editor of several books, curator ofexhibitions, participant and organizer of Lithuanian and International cultural and academicevents dedicated to Jewish culture.
Ilya Lensky has graduated History and Philosophy Department of University of Latvia, specializing in Modern and Contemporary History. Since 2006 he works at the Museum “Jews in Latvia”, director from 2008. His field of interest includes Latvia’s Jewish history with emphasis on Enlightenment, modernization of Jewish community, Jewish-Latvian relations, as well as issues of Holocaust commemoration. He has participated in editing several books on these topics (most recently “Neighborship Lost: Jews in Cultural Memory of Contemporary Latgale”, 2013/2018 and “Holocaust Commemoration in Latvia in the Course of Time, 1945-2015”, 2017), and contributed to a number of reference publications, including Handbuch des Antisemitismus. Judenfeindschaft in Geschichte und Gegenwart and Latvian National Encyclopedia. He has been board member of Latvian Association of Museums in 2014-2016, and from 2023 is board member of ICOM Latvia, and is Latvian delegate to the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance since 2014.
Photo: from the Lithuanian National Martynas Mažvydas Library, Department in the National Library of Lithuania, The staff of the YIVO (Jewish Scientific Institute) in Vilnius, c. 1926