JS Lecture Series - Javier Castaño - Elusive Souls: Jewish Converts and their Predicament in Early Modern Iberia

Jewish Studies
Open to the Public
Nador u. 9, Monument Building
Popper Room
Academic Area: 
Tuesday, February 21, 2017 - 6:00pm
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Tuesday, February 21, 2017 - 6:00pm to 7:30pm

JEWISH STUDIES PROGRAMcordially invites you to a lecture by

Javier Castaño

(Spanish National Research Council (CSIC), Madrid)

Elusive Souls: Jewish Converts and their Predicament in Early Modern Iberia

Taking advantage of a diverse typology of historical documentary sources, whether Christian or Jewish, I have chosen different characters of fifteenth century and early sixteenth century Iberian (Castilian, Navarrese, and Portuguese) Jewish neophytes, to llustrate the predicaments they (and their immediate offspring) experienced, both within their new social setting as well as with their former brethren. I will take the opportunity to analyze what I call the objective mechanics of conversion. Though focusing on the individuals, I will show them against the backdrop of the variegated Iberian societies, both Christian and Jewish.

Tuesday, February 21 at 6 p.m.
Popper Room, Monument Building

Javier Castaño studied history and Jewish studies at the University of Madrid and the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. He has been a research fellow at Harvard, Philadelphia), and Oxford, and has taught at the ÉHESS (Paris) and the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. His research concerns different aspects of the society, economy and religious culture of late medieval Iberian Jewry and its early modern Sephardic Diaspora. Recent publications: "'Cleanse Me from My Sin:' the Social and Cultural Vicissitudes of a Converso Family in Fifteenth-Century Castile," (2017), in P. Macejko & Th. Dunkelgrün (eds.), Bastards and Believers. Converts and Conversion between Judaism and Christianity (Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press). (2017), "Entangled Dowries of Converts in Transition in Early Modern Navarre," in A. Bar-Levav & C. D. Stuczynski (eds.), The Path to Modernity. Studies in Honor of Prof. Yosef Kaplan (Jerusalem: The Historical Society of Israel). (2015) "The Peninsula as a Borderless Space: Towards a Mobility 'Turn' in the Study of 15th Century Iberian Jewries," in Ph. Buc, M. Keil & J. Tolan (eds.), Jews and Christians in Medieval Europe: The Historiographical Legacy of Bernhard Blumenkranz (Turnhout: Brepols), 315-332. (2014) ed., ¿Una Sefarad inventada? Los problemas de interpretación de la cultura material de los judíos en España (Córdoba: Editorial El Almendro).