Readings on Maramarosh

Readings on Maramarosh


Elieser Slomovic

Series: The Holocaust: History and Literature, Ethics and Philosophy
ISBN: 9781618112422 (hardcover)
Pages: 282 pp.
Publication Date: October 2013

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Since World War II, the sub-Carpathian Mountain region once known as Maramarosh has remained “Judenrein” (free of Jews). Jewish Maramarosh lives on, however, through the contributions to scholarship and humanity of Maramarosh Holocaust survivors and their progeny, including Nobel laureate Elie Weisel and the Talmud scholar Professor David Halivni-Weiss. Maramarosh Shoah survivor and Talmud scholar Professor Elieser Slomovic here provides access to a collection of responsa literature, most of it out of print and previously available only or primarily in Yiddish. Through personal queries about how to live Torah-instructed lives and rabbinic responses, the reader is invited to enter the world of Jewish Maramarosh, where Hasidism flourished and rabbinic scholarship reflected human nobility manifested through the pragmatics of poverty and the dynamics of living closely with nature. Professor Slomovic, recognizing the fluidity and balance over time provided by Talmudic thought as exemplified through rabbinic teaching, invites the reader to join the discourse on the everyday life of everyday people.

Elieser Slomovic (PhD Jewish Theological Seminary) was a scholar of post-biblical and rabbinic literature and the Finkelstein Associate Professor of Rabbinics at the American Jewish University (formerly known as the University of Judaism). His published articles include “Toward an Understanding of the Formation of Historical Titles in the Book of Psalms” and “Toward an Understanding of the Exegesis of the Dead Sea Scrolls.” Professor Slomovic passed away in 2005.

In addition to being a scholarly work, this book is also a personal memoir. Known and little-known events fill its pages. . . . Essays, childhood memories from the ghetto and the camps, fascinating response problems both timeless and new, deeply moving meditations on faith and suffering, despair and hope, reflections and descriptions: they are all in this remarkable book, which can be described as a rewarding quest for both intellectual enrichment and nostalgic remembering. I recommend it to readers everywhere: it is a true gift. And a blessing too.
— Elie Wiesel, University Professor, Andrew W. Mellon Professor in the Humanities and Professor of Philosophy and Religion, Boston University
He [Dr. Slomovic] knew that a proper history of Maramarosh Jewry from its conception was an almost impossible task. . . . He brought to it his knowledge of responsa literature and his erudition in the historical literature connected with Maramarosh. . . He is a cautious observer, working painstakingly to draw out the truth. You could almost feel his personality intruding into his research, soft, careful, and meticulous. One gets the feeling that he is treading on holy ground, never forgetting whom his is describing. Writing this history was not for him a secular activity, competing with studying Torah, but a holy endeavor that deserved religious attention. He embodied a rare combination of awe and thoroughness, distance and closeness, pain and satisfaction. This is a scholarly and a religious book combined.
— David Halivni, Professor (emeritus) of Classical Jewish Civilization, Columbia University


Foreword, by David Lieber
Preface, by David Halivni
A Personal Note, by Elie Wiesel
A Note of Introduction


I: Piety
II: Hasidut
III: Shabbat
IV: Family
V: Kashrut
VI: Drusah (Domestic animals attacked by wild beasts)
VII: Community/Synagogue
VIII: Agunot
IX: Parnasot (Occupations)
X: B’chor (First-born animal)
XI: Farming
XII: Regal (Government or noble franchises)
XIII: Zionism
XIV: Antisemitism
XV: Shoah
I: Zicharon Abraham (1900)
II: Hertzl Upshon (1939)
III: Cohen-Yambor (1940)
IV: Chaim Tarshi (1944)
V: Without Jews (1944)
VI: Rab Y. Y. Greenwald (1945)
VII: Naphtali ben Menachem (1945)
VIII: Eye of Tears (1946)
IX: Our Journey to Solotvino (1978)
Remembering Our Father, by Sara Slomovic Welts and Ephraim Slomovic

Bibliography and Biographies of Responsa Authors in Th is Volume
Geographic Terms. Official and Unofficial Names of Regions and Districts
Language Variants of Place Names