7th February

Promised Lands: Jews, Poland, and the Land of Israel

An in-depth investigation of how Polish Jews, Polish Zionism, and Polish culture influenced Israel’s cultural and political development

Tuesday, 7 February 2023 09:30 – 17:00 GMT


Embassy Of The Republic Of Poland


A conference to launch Polin 35, an in-depth and multifaceted investigation of how Polish Jews, Polish Zionism, and Polish culture influenced Israel’s cultural and political development, as well as of how the Zionist project influenced Jewish life in Poland.

From its inception as a political movement, Zionism had as its main goal the creation of a ‘New Jew’ who could contribute to building a Jewish state, preferably in the historic homeland of the Jewish people, where Jews would free themselves from the negative characteristics which, in the view of the ideologues of Zionism, had developed in the diaspora. Yet, inevitably, those who settled in Palestine brought with them considerable cultural baggage. A substantial proportion of them came from the Polish lands, and their presence significantly affected the political and cultural life of the Yishuv, and later the State of Israel. In this volume, scholars from Israel, Poland and elsewhere in Europe, and North America explore different aspects of this influence, as well as the continuing relationship between Israel and Poland, up to the present day.


9.30am Registration

10.00am Welcome

Professor Piotr Wilczek, HE the Ambassador of the Republic of Poland

Mr Vivian Wineman, President of the Institute for Polish-Jewish Studies

10.15am Panel 1: Introduction to the volume

Israel Bartal (Hebrew University, Jerusalem), François Guesnet (UCL), Antony Polonsky (Brandeis University/UCL), Scott Ury (Tel Aviv University)

11.00am Coffee break

11.30am Panel 2: Jews, Poles, and the Land of Israel: Religious and Cultural Perspectives

Uriel Gellman (Bar Ilan University): The Hasidic kolelim in Palestine

Wiesiek Powaga (London): Ksawery Pruszyński and Mojżesz Pomeranz: missed links in the emergence of the State of Israel

12.30pm Lunch (provided)

1.30pm Panel 3: Between Poland and Israel

Hanna Lerner (Tel Aviv University): Henryk Hechtkopf: Art and Society between Poland and Israel

Monika Adamczyk-Garbowska (Maria Curie-Skłodowska University Lublin): Mordecai Tsanin: Fighting for Yiddish in the State of Israel

Jagoda Budzik (Wroclaw University): Third post-Holocaust Generation’s Journeys to Poland and their challenge to Israeli Discourse

3.30pm Tea break

4.00pm Concluding discussion: Poland and Israel Today

Introductory remarks by Yifat Gutman (Ben Gurion University, Ber Sheva) and Elżbieta Kossewska (Warsaw University) on the legacies of Polish-Israeli relations, in conversation with the volume editors and the audience.

5.00pm Conference ends


Registration: Registration is free via Eventbrite. Please click  REGISTER and fill in your details on the Eventbrite site.

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