Bratislava Seminar on Jewish Heritage -- Promotion, Preservation
Information at synagogue in Samorin, Slovakia, now an arts center. Photo (c) Ruth Ellen Gruber
Last week I attended an international seminar in Bratislava on strategies for the preservation, management and promotion of Jewish built heritage in (mainly) post-communist Europe.
In the past 10 or 15 years, many buildings -- including former synagogues -- have been restituted to Jewish communities in these countries. Some (most?) are in poor condition. What can/should be done with them? This was the core issue of what turned out to be a very intensive meeting that combined discussion with on-site visits.
As the author of National Geographic Jewish Heritage Travel: A Guide to Eastern Europe, I have roamed thousands of miles around Europe's historic Jewish heartland, bringing Jewish heritage to light for on-site explorers and armchair travelers alike. On this blog I will post photographs, links and personal experiences related to Jewish heritage sites and travel, particularly in the countries of east-central Europe.
Aside from clearly marked quotations, links and pictures, all material on this blog is copyright ⓒ Ruth Ellen Gruber
I'm an American writer, photographer, and public speaker long based in Europe. I've chronicled Jewish cultural developments and other contemporary European Jewish issues for more than 20 years. My latest books are "National Geographic Jewish Heritage Travel: A Guide to Eastern Europe," published in 2007, and "Letters from Europe (and Elsewhere)," published in 2008.
I also am working on "Sturm, Twang and Sauerkraut Cowboys: Imaginary Wild Wests in Contemporary Europe," an exploration of the American West in the European imagination for which I won a 2006 Guggenheim Fellowship and an NEH summer stipend grant.