Secrecy and Deceit: The Religion of the Crypto-Jews by David M. GitlitzSecrecy and Deceit: The Religion of the Crypto-Jews by David M. Gitlitz

Secrecy and Deceit: The Religion of the Crypto-Jews

byDavid M. GitlitzIntroduction byIlan Stavans

Paperback | April 12, 2002

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This important history documents the religious customs of the crypto-Jewish culture in Spain, Portugal, and their American colonies, principally Mexico, Peru, and Brazil. In coping with clandestineness, crypto-Jews rapidly evolved their own idiosyncratic religion. Its Jewish core was quickly replaced with concepts and practices from the surrounding Catholic culture covered by a veneer of Jewish theology. Included in this award-winning volume are examinations of crypto-Jewish beliefs, superstitions, birth customs, education, marriage and sex, holidays, dietary laws, conversions and death, and burial practices. Secrecy and Deceit provides a comprehensive account of the customs of these secret Jews.

"Secrecy and Deceit provides rare glimpses into a subject that is increasingly fascinating to many different audiences."--Jane S. Gerber, Director, Institute for Sephardic Studies, CUNY Graduate Center

"Historians and students of comparative and popular religion will be drawing on this work for years."--Haym Soloveitchik, Yeshiva University

Winner of the National Jewish Book Award and the Lucy B. Davidowicz History Award

David M. Gitlitz, of the University of Rhode Island, is a scholar-administrator who over the last two decades has divided his time among research on Sephardic historical topics, Spanish Golden Age literature, pilgrimage studies, and university administration and teaching.
Title:Secrecy and Deceit: The Religion of the Crypto-JewsFormat:PaperbackPublished:April 12, 2002Publisher:University Of New Mexico PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:082632813X

ISBN - 13:9780826328137

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Rated 3 out of 5 by from Fascinating History of Iberian Jewish Culture Fascinating account of Jewish life before the 1492 Expulsion from Spain and the emergence of crpyto or secret judaism following the trials of the Inquisition. The author takes us into Portugal and Spain that was home to an important and thriving Jewish community on the Iberian Peninsula. Amazing how many Jewish traditions have continued in Portugal and Spain even though its inhabitants have no idea that their ancestors might have been descended from the people of Israel. The topic of how Jews (New Christians) assimilated into the larger Old-Christian population needs to be further researched as there is much historical documentation to be researched.
Date published: 2009-03-10

Editorial Reviews

"His scholarship is massive and his book is both easily manageable and thorough."