Shtetl Routes. Vestiges of Jewish cultural heritage in cross-border tourism in borderland of Poland, Belarus and Ukraine

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Shtetl Routes. Vestiges of Jewish cultural heritage in cross-border tourism in borderland of Poland, Belarus and Ukraine

Beta version

NN Theatre
In the footsteps of I. B. Singer’s stories

In the footsteps of I. B. Singer’s stories

We invite you to embark on an intriguing trip of literary heritage of Isaac Bashevis Singer – a Nobel Prize laureate, who drew inspiration for his novels and short stories from traditions and lots of small towns lost deep amidst the woods of Roztocze and mosaic fields of Wyżyna Lubelska.

The trail will run through: Lublin - Bychawa - Turobin - Goraj - Frampol - Biłgoraj - Tarnogród - Józefów Roztoczański - Tyszowce - Komarów - Zamość - Izbica - Piaski - Lublin.

Length: 362 km
Duration:
automobile road - 2-3 days
cycle track- 5-7 days

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In the footsteps of local photographers

In the footsteps of local photographers

The beginnings of photography in Poland date back to 1839 when the news of the daguerreotype reached the country. Photography quickly got popular, and near the end of the 19th century professional photography salons grew in numbers fast. In some towns there were even several of them. It is worthwhile to pay attention to the fact, that the photographer's profession was usually taken up by Jews. The activity of itinerant photographers was an extraordinary social phenomenon of the break of the 19th and 20th century in Poland. They travelled the province and offered their services as photographers. No documents on the topic remain, which is why their photos are the only evidence of their activity. Currently the memory of these photographers is being brought back, but many of them remain unknown or forgotten. Because of the aura of mystery and uniqueness surrounding the black-and-white prewar photographs, it is worth it to learn something about them. We kindly invite you for a journey in the footsteps of local photographers.

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In the footsteps of painters

In the footsteps of painters

In the footsteps of painters route aims to teach about a rich and diverse culture of shtetls by presenting the painters that lived there, as well as their body of work.

The route painters presents the changes in art which took place on the break of the 19th and 20th century. For a large group of painters the descent was hardly irrelevant, and throughout their artistically active years they referenced the places and circles in which they grew up. They painted townships, and alleys of Jewish streets, praying Jews and other scenes depicting the life of Jewish population. It was not a dominant theme, however. Painters conducted their own artistic searches, and many of them were influenced by various European styles and movements, especially the École de Paris circles. The majority of this artistic group came from shtetls, and some of them, thanks to their talent, hard work and determination became world-class artists contributing to the artistic environments in Paris, London or New York.

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The jeshivot route

The jeshivot route

We invite you to join the route tracing jeshivot in Belarus, which were very important places for Jewish communities.

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The route of Jewish printeries

The route of Jewish printeries

We invite you to join the route tracing Jewish printeries, which were very important places for Jewish communities. Because of their extraordinary care for books, including the most import one, the Torah, for centuries Jews have been called the People of the Book. Publishing books was even called "awodat ha–kodesh", "a sacred profession". Hebrew printing houses published a Hebrew Bible with commentaries, as well as sermons, ethical and Talmudic treaties, midrashes, Jewish legal codices, and prayer books. A significant percent of the published books was Cabbalistic and Hassidic literature [1].

The beginnings of Jewish publishing on the historical Polish territories dates back to the first half of the 16th century – the oldest printing workshops were founded in Kazimierz near Kraków (1534) and in Lublin (1544–1682). Thanks to beneficial administrative decisions, favourable bishop censorship, and magnates' conviction that founding a printery brought numerous benefits (for instance increased the economic standing of the city, enabled export–oriented production, contributed to educating the residents, increased income) in the 17th and 18th centuries there appeared dozens of new publishing houses: in Biała Cerkiew, Białorożce, Bogusław, Bracław, Dubno, Dubrowno, Korets, Międzyboż, Międzyrzec, Mińkowice, Ostroh, Połonne, Poryck, Radziwiłłów, Szkłów, Sławut, Sudyłków, Zasław, and other places. Despite all of this, until the 19th century their publishing could not compete with a rich selection of books imported for the needs of the Jewish population of Poland.

The 19th century brought a significant change to that. At that time a clear breakthrough in the number of Hebrew and Yiddish publications took place, especially in the Austrian and Russian partitions.

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The route tracking An–ski's ethnography and journalism

The route tracking An–ski's ethnography and journalism

We invite you to a journey in the steps of a Jewish ethnographer, writer, and social activist – S. An–ski.

The route includes 7 townships in Volhynia: Luboml Volodymyr-VolynskyKovelLutskOstrohDubnoKremenetsKorets.

The route: 420 km, time of a car journey – one week.

Visiting the townships along the route is connected to the topics present in the source materials (reports and folklore) and the preserved iconographic materials.

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