For many American Jews the well-documented reports of increased anti-Semitism this summer in such countries as England, France, Hungary, Germany and Sweden, sparked by the Gaza war, only confirmed a perception that there is no future for Jewish life in Europe.
Efforts to get Jewish books to Holocaust survivors in Europe
In the spring of 1946, Zalman Grinberg and Josef Rosenzaft, representatives of Jewish Holocaust survivors and Displaced Persons (DPs) in the American and British zones of post-World War II Europe, respectively, visited the United States. “Bread alone is not enough,” they poignantly pleaded to American Jews, “Send us poets, writers and singers to show us that Jewish life is not dead.”
Conventional wisdom has it that young American Jews are leading the trend toward innovation in Jewish life through entrepreneurial start-ups. There is also the widespread belief that European Jewry is on its last legs, the victim of an aging and shrinking population, and the rise of anti-Semitism, primarily from Arab Muslim immigrants.
But a survey of new Jewish initiatives in Europe concludes that per capita, young Europeans are even more active than their American counterparts in these social, educational, cultural and historical ventures.
Swedish ‘incubator’ project training young leaders, resisting the notion that Jewish life is dying.
Editor And Publisher
Stockholm — When the tall Hungarian woman in the back of the room rose to speak, I could see the passion and flash of anger in her face. She was the first to raise her hand after my talk to 27 young men and women from both Eastern and Western Europe, participants in a 10-day program in the Swedish capital for academics and activists committed to enhancing Jewish life in their native countries.