IMC 2017: Sessions

Session 323: Speaking in the Other's Voice: Means and Limitations of Jewish Self-Expression in 'Christian' Source Types from Late Medieval Askhenaz

Monday 3 July 2017, 16.30-18.00

Sponsor:Institut für jüdische Geschichte Österreichs, St. Pölten
Organiser:Birgit Wiedl, Institut für jüdische Geschichte Österreichs, St. Pölten
Moderator/Chair:Birgit Wiedl, Institut für jüdische Geschichte Österreichs, St. Pölten
Paper 323-aWhen is a Jew (Not) a Jew?: Potential and Pitfalls of Charters as Sources on Jewish History
(Language: English)
Eveline Brugger, Institut für jüdische Geschichte Österreichs, St. Pölten
Index terms: Archives and Sources, Charters and Diplomatics, Hebrew and Jewish Studies, Social History
Paper 323-bJewish Seals and Sealing Practices in the Medieval German Kingdom
(Language: English)
Andreas Lehnertz, Arye Maimon-Institut für Geschichte der Juden, Universität Trier
Index terms: Charters and Diplomatics, Genealogy and Prosopography, Hebrew and Jewish Studies
Paper 323-cBeing Jewish at a Christian Court: The Jewish Community of Regensburg and Its Legal Struggle against Expulsion
(Language: English)
Veronika Nickel, Historisches Seminar, Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München
Index terms: Charters and Diplomatics, Hebrew and Jewish Studies, Law
Abstract

Documents stemming from Jewish-Christian interaction could provide a specific space for Ashkenazi Jews to express and assert themselves. In their German or Latin charters, Jewish businessmen and -women adapted Christian diplomatic formulae, composition, and means of corroboration, such as the Christian convention of sealing documents. Like their Christian counterparts, Jews used seals also as a medium of self-representation. Court documents show that legal strategies were applied by Jews and Christians alike, indicating that the Jewish parties were well-versed in the common lines of reasoning before Christian courts. The similarities in style can go so far as to make it difficult to identify Jewish issuers or participants, leading to the question of how Jewish and Christian expression differed in ‘Christian’ sources, and how much influence Jews actually had on this kind of expression.