Finding a Home in the Global Shtetl: The Archaeology of Jewish Placemaking in the Diaspora

Author(s): David M Markus

Year: 2018


Jews in the 17th - 19th Centuries lived perpetual ‘others,’ their lives typified by displacement, often through forced exile or social and economic ostracization. These individuals exemplified life in the Diaspora, defining their experience in juxtaposition to the regions where they lived. They marked their identity as being members of a global Jewish community all the while assimilating to the societal norms of their temporary homelands. The archaeology of the Jewish communities in North America and the Caribbean studies populations that existed "betwixt and between" worlds. The material culture of these communities represent individuals attempting to obscure their religious identity from their neighbors while maintaining ties to the broader Jewish Diaspora. Coupled with the pragmatism of life in a frontier setting, disentangling and analyzing Jewish placemaking through archaeology can be challenging. This paper seeks to provide a means of making sense of the artifacts of this conundrum of place.

Cite this Record

Finding a Home in the Global Shtetl: The Archaeology of Jewish Placemaking in the Diaspora. David M Markus. Presented at Society for Historical Archaeology, Albuquerque, NM. 2018 ( tDAR id: 441658)


diaspora Jewish place

Geographic Keywords
North America United States of America

Temporal Keywords
17th - 19th centuries

Spatial Coverage

min long: -129.199; min lat: 24.495 ; max long: -66.973; max lat: 49.359 ;

Individual & Institutional Roles

Contact(s): Society for Historical Archaeology

Record Identifiers

PaperId(s): 745