How Philanthropy and Migration Remade the Modern Jewish World and What’s Happening Now

Sunday, April 30, 2022 at 5:00PM
in the Chapel

Register Here

Join us for an evening wine, cheese and interesting conversation!

UC Irvine historian and director of The Center for Jewish Studies Matthias Lehmann will discuss his biography of Baron Maurice de Hirsch with Chapman professor and temple member, Shira Klein, in an event moderated by Joel Kotkin, Chapman presidential fellow. They will be discussing the influential Jewish philanthropist, de Hirsch, who was the very embodiment of the gilded age of Jewish philanthropy among his contemporaries, who included the Rothschilds and the Carnegies. The panel will explore how his philanthropy and the mass migration of that time forever remade the modern Jewish world.

Baron Maurice de Hirsch was one of the emblematic figures of the nineteenth century and the most influential Jewish philanthropist of his time—a period when, as now, private benefactors played an outsize role in shaping the collective fate of Jewish communities.

The panel will also discuss the migration of the Jewish community—then and now, where world events are reshaping where Jews are choosing to live.

Matthias Lehmann is the Teller Family Chair in Jewish History at the University of California, Irvine. An elected member of the American Academy of Jewish Research, his recent publication is Baron: Maurice de Hirsch and the Jewish Nineteenth Century (Stanford, 2022) as well as Jews and the Mediterranean with Jessica Marglin (Indiana, 2020), and other publications.

Shira Klein is Associate Professor of History at Chapman University. Her book, Italy’s Jews from Emancipation to Fascism (Cambridge University Press) was selected as a finalist for the 2018 National Jewish Book Award. The book uncovers the Italian Jewish experience from the late nineteenth century to the Holocaust and postwar years.

Joel Kotkin is a Chapman University Presidential Fellow and Executive Director of their Center for Demographics and Policy. He is author of The Coming of Neo Feudalism: A Warning to the Global Middle Class (Encounter) as well as many other books. He is contributing columnist to numerous publications and editor of the website

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