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Ben-Ur, Aviva

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Aviva Ben-Ur, born in Boston, Massachusetts, USA, in 1968. Ph.D. from Brandeis University, Waltham, Massachusetts. Associate Professor of History at University of Massachusetts Amherst.

Fellow (1 February 2013 – 30 June 2013)

The Retention and Transformation of Culture and Ethnicity in the Dutch Atlantic

Connections in the Dutch Atlantic were not only forged by means of trade, but also through the forced and voluntary migration of various ethnic groups, some of which overlapped with religious identities. The main questions of this project concern the survivals and transformations of the major Old and New World Native identities. This entails considering what happened when ethnic and religious groups, whose most recent origins were European, came into contact with African-origin and indigenous peoples in the Dutch Atlantic. Also to be interrogated is whether ethnic identification eroded or was sustained under Dutch rule, which African and indigenous ethnicities survived and consolidated in the Americas, and the extent to which ethnicities merged and their corresponding religions transformed.

Selected Publications

(with Rachel Frankel), Remnant Stones: The Jewish Cemeteries and Synagogues of Suriname: Essays (Cincinnati: Hebrew Union College Press, 2012).

(and Rachel Frankel), Remnant Stones: The Jewish Cemeteries of Suriname: Epitaphs (Cincinnati: Hebrew Union College Press, 2009).

Sephardic Jews in America: A Diasporic History (New York: New York University Press, 2009; paperback: 2011).

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