Jewish Diaspora in Modern China

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Description

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About this course: Jewish Diaspora in China is a unique experience for world Jewry, as China is the only country in Far East that has had Jews living in its society for over 1,000 years. Documentary evidence shows that Jews started to live in China no later than the Tang Dynasty (618–907). The famous Kaifeng Jewish community, which was established in Kaifeng, the Chinese capital of the Song Dynasty (960-1279), is but a best-known example. However, the largest Jewish Diaspora in China appeared in modern times. In over 100 years, from the mid-19th century to the mid-20th century, about 40,000 Jews came to China and lived in newly-established major port cities such as Hong Kong, Shanghai, …

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Didn't find what you were looking for? See also: Cultural Differences, Customs, Diversity & Equality, Intercultural Communication, and Culture.

When you enroll for courses through Coursera you get to choose for a paid plan or for a free plan

  • Free plan: No certicification and/or audit only. You will have access to all course materials except graded items.
  • Paid plan: Commit to earning a Certificate—it's a trusted, shareable way to showcase your new skills.

About this course: Jewish Diaspora in China is a unique experience for world Jewry, as China is the only country in Far East that has had Jews living in its society for over 1,000 years. Documentary evidence shows that Jews started to live in China no later than the Tang Dynasty (618–907). The famous Kaifeng Jewish community, which was established in Kaifeng, the Chinese capital of the Song Dynasty (960-1279), is but a best-known example. However, the largest Jewish Diaspora in China appeared in modern times. In over 100 years, from the mid-19th century to the mid-20th century, about 40,000 Jews came to China and lived in newly-established major port cities such as Hong Kong, Shanghai, Tianjin, and Harbin. Jewish communities composed of these Jews became an essential part of the economic and social life of those modern Chinese cities. What brought such a large number of Jews to China? Where did these people come from? How did they arrive? Were they all in China at the same time, and were there any differences among them? What happened to them after they arrived? Where are they now? The story of Jews in modern China is certainly a fascinating and up-lifting one. This course will examine these questions and more.

Created by:  Nanjing University
  • Taught by:  Xin Xu, Professor

    Department of Philosophy
Commitment 8 hours of videos, quizzes and peer review Language English How To Pass Pass all graded assignments to complete the course. User Ratings 4.3 stars Average User Rating 4.3See what learners said Coursework

Each course is like an interactive textbook, featuring pre-recorded videos, quizzes and projects.

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Nanjing University Nanjing University (NJU) is committed to excellence in teaching and research. Located on the prosperous eastern coast of China, NJU provides a dynamic environment that nurtures learning, creativity, and discovery on one of the most beautiful campuses in the country. Taking NJU's university offerings on Coursera will be a rewarding experience for learners from every corner of the world.

Syllabus


WEEK 1


Introduction
This course, "Jewish Diaspora in Modern China," will give you an understanding of the major issues related to the history of Jews in China in Modern times.


1 video, 1 reading expand


  1. Video: Introduction:Wandering Jews
  2. Reading: Suggested Readings


Background: Jews and China



In this module, we will introduce pre-modern Chinese society, wars with Western Powers, and the Open Door Policy. We will also analyze major causes that brought Jews to China. In particular, we will focus on waves of migrating Sephardic and Ashkenazi Jews to China, which mark the beginning of the history of the Jewish diaspora in modern China.


3 videos expand


  1. Video: Background Jews and China
  2. Video: External Causes that Brought Jews to China
  3. Video: Three Waves of Jews Coming to China

Graded: Background: Jews and China

WEEK 2


The Jewish Community in Shanghai
In this module, we will study four Jewish communities established in Shanghai from the second half of the 19th century to the mid-20th century, with a special focus on the Sephardic Jews and European Jewish refugees.


5 videos expand


  1. Video: The Pioneers: Sephardi Jews
  2. Video: The Persecuted Ashkenazi Jewish Community
  3. Video: Holocaust Victims
  4. Video: The Polish Jewish Community
  5. Video: Jewish Communal Life and the Practice of Judaism in Shanghai

Graded: The Jewish Community in Shanghai
Graded: Peer Review

WEEK 3


The Jewish Community in Harbin



In this module, we will discuss Harbin as a newly established modern Chinese city. We will explore the Jewish communal life in the city from its leadership, various Zionist organizations, business, observance, and relations with adjacent Jewish communities in the region and in the country.


5 videos expand


  1. Video: The Harbin Jewish Community
  2. Video: Religious Life
  3. Video: Economic Life
  4. Video: Cultural Life
  5. Video: Other Jewish Communities and their links to Harbin

Graded: The Jewish Community in Harbin
Graded: Peer Review

WEEK 4


The Jewish Community in Tianjin
In this module, we will focus on the Jewish communal life in the port city of Tianjin, tracing its beginnings, development, and decline. We will also introduce some well-known Jewish individuals living in the city.


4 videos expand


  1. Video: Overview
  2. Video: Famous Jews of Tianjin
  3. Video: Communal Life
  4. Video: Qingdao Jews

Graded: The Jewish Community in Tianjin

WEEK 5


The Jewish Community in Hong Kong



In this module, we will explore the special status of Hong Kong as a center of Jewish life in China. We will trace the ups and downs of Jewish life in the city and the unique roles the Hong Kong Jewish Community played in the city-- the only Jewish community with a sustained, uninterrupted history in China over the past 160 years.


4 videos expand


  1. Video: Formative Period
  2. Video: Developments
  3. Video: Religion
  4. Video: Relations With the Mainland

Graded: The Jewish Community in Hong Kong

WEEK 6


Departure and Contributions
In this module, we will analyze the factors that spurred the departure of about 40,000 Jews from China. We will also discuss their contributions-- economic and cultural-- on Chinese society today.


4 videos expand


  1. Video: Departure
  2. Video: Contributions to China's Economy
  3. Video: Contributions to China's Culture
  4. Video: Conclusion

Graded: Departure and Contributions
Graded: Peer Review

WEEK 7


History Renewed and Impact



In this module, we will describe the re-establishment of Jewish communities in contemporary Chinese society, especially in Beijing and Shanghai, following the adoption of China's open-door policies and economic reforms in the 1980s. We will also discuss the impact of the re-establishment of Jewish communities on Chinese academia.


3 videos expand


  1. Video: New Attractions
  2. Video: Renewed Communities
  3. Video: Impact
  4. Peer Review: Peer Review

Graded: History Renewed and Impact
Graded: Peer Review
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