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Polin: Studies in Polish Jewry Volume 31Poland and Hungary: Jewish Realities Compared$
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François Guesnet, Howard Lupovitch, and Antony Polonsky

Print publication date: 2019

Print ISBN-13: 9781906764715

Published to Liverpool Scholarship Online: February 2021

DOI: 10.3828/liverpool/9781906764715.001.0001

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Polish ‘Progressive’ Judaism and Hungarian Neolog Judaism

Polish ‘Progressive’ Judaism and Hungarian Neolog Judaism

A Comparison

(p.225) Polish ‘Progressive’ Judaism and Hungarian Neolog Judaism
Polin: Studies in Polish Jewry Volume 31

Benjamin Matis

Liverpool University Press

This chapter assesses how, despite the yawning chasm between the self-identities of Jews in Poland and those of Jews in Hungary, attempts at moderate religious reform, particularly in liturgy and synagogue practice, were successful in both countries, albeit on a much different scale. Religious reform in the Polish lands made few inroads among most of the Jewish population, unlike Hungarian Jewry's moderate reforms in the so-called Neolog movement. There was a small but very significant number of Polish Jews who called themselves 'Progressives'. Nevertheless, a comparison of liturgical changes in the language of the Progressive and Neolog prayer books reveals that Polish Progressive and Hungarian Neolog Judaism were in many ways alike. The most important similarity was the adaptation of the moderate Vienna rite (Wiener Ritus) of Isak Noa Mannheimer, while the second was use of the organ or other instruments which were traditionally forbidden.

Keywords:   Polish Jews, Hungarian Jews, religious reform, liturgy, synagogue practice, Neolog prayer books, Polish Progressive Judaism, Hungarian Neolog Judaism, Vienna rite, Isak Noa Mannheimer

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