Fall Term 2019 Excursions
Historical Jewish Neighborhoods of Budapest

At the start of the Academic Year 2019-2020, the Jewish Studies Specialization invited its students to explore the rich Jewish heritage of Budapest. On September 9, 2019, professors of the program offered a walking tour through Budapest’s 7th district, the “Jewish quarter,” to its synagogues, memorials, and other Jewish sites, complete with a visit to one of the district’s ‘ruin pubs.’ On September 24, we were hosted at the Hungarian Rabbinical Seminary - Jewish University by Balázs Tamási, the director of its library, who introduced us to the history and heritage of this key institution of Hungarian Jewish scholarship. On September 26, students and professors of the Jewish Studies Program gathered for a walking-tour in the 5th Budapest district, the neighborhood of the Hungarian Parliament, where recent memorials commemorate World War II and the Holocaust with competing historical narratives. On October 15, the class "Jewish Cultural Heritage" held an outdoor session in Újlipótváros, the modernist neighborhood in Budapest's 13th district, which was built as a residential area of the liberal Jewish middle class. CEU alumna Gréta Süveges, author of a Sociology thesis on the "hidden Jewish narratives" of this area, generously shared her knowledge with us. On November 23, students of the "Jewish Cultural Heritage" class attended a Sabbath prayer service at the Teleki tér prayer house, a Hasidic ‘shtibl’ in the 8th Budapest district, and were kindly hosted by its community.