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Current Programs

Non-members/Visitors are welcome to attend programs for a $5.00 fee. If a guest joins the Society the fee will be applied toward the membership dues. Programs generally start at 1:30 PM - see exact time for each meeting, below. Doors open a half-hour earlier. Meetings start with JGSGW business, introductions of new members, and then the guest speaker.

Workshops are open to JGSGW members only. Non-members may join on the day of the workshop unless advance registration is required.


Meeting Calendar for First Half 2015

 
  June 7: Potomac Community Center
 

 Inclement weather policy: if the synagogue
 (or other venue) is closed, our meeting will not be held.

 

June Sunday, June 7, 2015
Program:  
Membership Appreciation Luncheon      *** Members Only - no Guests ***
Location:  
Time:  
Noon - Meeting and Luncheon
1:00 PM - Program
  Speaker: Prof. Glenn Dyner, PhD: "Jews, Liquor, and Life in Eastern Europe" (bio)
In pre-modern Eastern Europe, the Jewish-run tavern was often the center of leisure, hospitality, business, and even religious festivities. This unusual situation came about because the nobles who owned taverns believed that only Jews were sober enough to run taverns profitably, a belief so ingrained as to endure even the rise of Hasidism's robust drinking culture. As liquor became the region's boom industry, Jewish tavern keepers became integral to both local economies and local social life, presiding over Christian celebrations and dispensing advice, medical remedies and loans. Nevertheless, reformers and government officials, blaming Jewish tavern keepers for epidemic peasant drunkenness, sought to drive Jews out of the liquor trade. Historians have assumed that this spelled the end of the Polish Jewish liquor trade. However, newly discovered archival sources demonstrate that nobles often helped their Jewish tavern keepers evade fees, bans and expulsions by installing Christians as “fronts” for their taverns. The result—a vast underground Jewish liquor trade—reflects an impressive level of local Polish-Jewish co-existence that contrasts with the more familiar story of anti-Semitism and violence.


                          
© 2015, Jewish Genealogy Society of Greater Washington, Inc.