The history of the jews in the Middle East


Orit Bashkin and Mark R. Cohen in conversation with Helge Jordheim

Tuesday 3. March 2015, 18:30 until 19:30

Venue: Wergeland

Host: Litteraturhuset

Entrance: Free entry

How should the Jewish heritage be used when building a future? What insights might be of importance for us today and are there pitfalls one should try to avoid? Orit Bashkin has specialised in the stories of Iraqi Jews. For more than 2,000 years their history was mainly characterised by peaceful coexistence with Christians and Muslims. However, this changed drastically with the emergence of Iraqi nationalism in the early 20th century. The Jewish people faced pressure from both the Iraqi and Israeli sides, which eventually caused most of them to move to Israel.

Mark R. Cohen’s work focuses on the position of Jewish people in Muslim and Christian societies in the Middle Ages and how they were treated as a minority. In this conversation Cohen and Bashkin will talk about what we might learn from history. How should our knowledge about earlier times affect how we relate to one another today? The conversation between Bashkin and Cohen will be led by Helge Jordheim, professor of Cultural History at the University of Oslo.