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Youtai – Presence and Perception of Jews and Judaism in China

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Peter Kupfer

This volume summarizes the results of a research project organized at Mainz University in Germersheim, Germany. It focused on the Jewish community in Kaifeng in China (12 th to 19 th century). In recent years, increasing research has been done about the history and culture of the Jews in China, and in the future, more academic interest in all questions connected with it can be expected. Main topics are the perception of Chinese Judaism in European history as well as in Chinese society itself, the self-image of the descendants in Kaifeng and their present status in China, and how China deals with foreign ethnics and religions as part of its own history and identity. These topics were discussed from various interdisciplinary points of view. The authors from Australia, China, Hong Kong, Israel, Great Britain, France, and Germany are prominent sino-judaists who present their latest results of research in the light of new facts and approaches.
Contents: Peter Kupfer: The Perception and Self-Perception of Jewishness in Kaifeng in the Past and Present – Donald Daniel Leslie: Jews and Judaism in Traditional China: Prospects for Research – Pan Guang: Jews in China: Legends, History and New Perspectives – Noam Urbach: What Prevented the Reconstruction of the Chinese Synagogue? Kaifeng Jews between Revival and Obliteration – Zhang Ligang: The Understanding and Attitude of Chinese Society towards the Kaifeng Jews – Maisie J. Meyer: Bagdhdadi Jews, Chinese «Jews» and Chinese – Yin Gang: Between Disintegration and Expansion: A Comparative Retrospection of the Kaifeng Jewish and Muslim Communities – Zhou Xun: The ‘Jews’ in the May Fourth Period – Salomon Wald: Chinese Jews in European Thought – Zhang Qianhong: Comparison between the Jewish Education of Biblical Times and Pre-Qin Confucian Education – Robert Elliot Allinson: Six Arguments for the Primacy of the Proscriptive Formulation of the Golden Rule in the Jewish and Chinese Confucian Ethical Traditions.