John Efron
Koret Professor of Jewish History
Department of History
(510) 643-8887

Research Expertise and Interest

Cultural and social history of German Jewry


I focus on the way German Jewry attempted to reinterpret and reinvent Jewish culture in the wake of its complex encounter with modernity. Particular areas of interest include the German-Jewish engagement with medicine, anthropology, and antisemitism; Jewish political and popular culture in Central Europe, and the role of sport in the modern Jewish experience. My latest book, German Jewry and the Allure of the Sephardic, is a study of modern German Jewry’s attraction to the aesthetics of medieval Spanish Jewry (forthcoming, Princeton University Press). I'm currently writing a book on Jews and the five human senses.   











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