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Lithuanian Yeshivas of the Nineteenth CenturyCreating a Tradition of Learning$
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Shaul Stampfer

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9781874774792

Published to Liverpool Scholarship Online: February 2021

DOI: 10.3828/liverpool/9781874774792.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM LIVERPOOL SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.liverpool.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Liverpool University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in LSO for personal use.date: 18 October 2021

The Closure of the Volozhin Yeshiva

The Closure of the Volozhin Yeshiva

(p.190) Eight The Closure of the Volozhin Yeshiva
Lithuanian Yeshivas of the Nineteenth Century

Shaul Stampfer

Liverpool University Press

This chapter analyses the developments that brought about the Volozhin yeshiva's closure. It reveals surprising conclusions that illuminate both the yeshiva's internal politics in the late nineteenth century and its precarious status. The ostensible reason for the closure of the yeshiva was its refusal to accept the government demand for far-reaching changes in the curriculum so as to incorporate secular studies and to devote a significant number of hours to these studies. However, it is highly probable that this was not the real reason. The chapter draws from the archives of the former Soviet Union to conduct an examination of internal government documents from the tsarist period. These archives can reveal more about what really motivated the authorities in various episodes affecting the Jewish community. The chapter shows that the authorities knew a great deal about the internal affairs of the yeshiva, and certainly far more than most Jews ever imagined.

Keywords:   Volozhin, Volozhin yeshiva, yeshiva closure, secular studies, internal government documents, succession dispute, internal politics

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