Year 2019, Volume 5 , Issue 15, Pages 1462 - 1469 2020-01-14

Studies conducted into minorities like the Jews serves the purpose of sensitizing one about the existence of communities other than one’s own one, thereby promoting harmony and better understanding of other cultures. The Paper is titled ‘A Chronicle of Calcutta Jewry’. It lays stress on the beginning of the Jewish community in Calcutta with reference to the prominent Jewish families from the city. Most of the Jews in Calcutta, were from the middle-east and came to be called as Baghdadi Jews. Initially they were influenced by Arabic culture, language and customs, but later they became Anglicized with English replacing Judeo-Arabic (Arabic written in Hebrew script) as their language. A few social evils residing among the Jews briefly discussed. Although, the Jews of our city never experienced direct consequences of the Holocaust, they contributed wholeheartedly to the Jewish Relief Fund, that was set up by the Jewish Relief Association (JRA) to help the victims of the Shoah. The experience of a Jewish girl amidst the violence during the partition of India has been briefly touched upon.  The reason for the exodus of Jews from Calcutta after Independence of India and the establishment of the State of Israel has also been discussed. The contribution of the Jews to the lifestyle of the city is described with case study on ‘Nahoums’, the famous Jewish bakery of the city. A brief discussion on an eminent Jew from Calcutta who distinguished himself in service to the nation – J.F.R. Jacob, popularly known as Jack by his fellow soldiers has been given. The amicable relations between the Jews and Muslims in Calcutta have also been briefly portrayed. The research concludes with the prospect of the Jews becoming a part of the City’s history, peacefully resting in their cemeteries.

Jews, Calcutta, India, Baghdadi, Holocaust
  • Article: Fischel, W.J. (1965). The Immigration of “Arabian” Jews to India in the Eighteenth Century, Proceedings of the American Academy for Jewish Research, Volume 33. Books: Chakrabarti, K. (2014). Glimpses into the Jewish World of Calcutta 1798-1948, Kolkata, Readers Service Ray, D. (2001). The Jewish Heritage of Calcutta, Calcutta, Minerva Associates (Publications) Private Limited. Lecture: Cohen, A.M. (2019, August 17), Lecture on ‘History of Jewish Community in Calcutta’ (No official Title Given), Kolkata, Know My Religion, Indian Pluralism Foundation. Online Sources: Ginsburg, A. (2012, June 1). The Sum of His Many Parts, Open, Retrieved from Jewish Calcutta (2019). Recalling Jewish Calcutta Memories of the Jewish Community in Calcutta, Retrieved from Kämpchen, M. (2012, November 4). Alex Aronson Lives on, The Statesman, Retrieved from The Muslims Preserving Kolkata’s Last Jewish Synagogues, (2018, November 20). [Video], Retrieved from The Last Jews of Kolkata: Unique Stories from India, (2016, December 4). [Video], Retrieved from The Muslim Gatekeepers of the Jewish Synagogue: Unique Stories from India, (2016, September 30). [Video], Retrieved from WikiVisually (2019). Prostitution in Colonial India, Retrieved from
Primary Language en
Subjects Social
Journal Section Articles

Author: Sayan LODH
Country: India


Publication Date : January 14, 2020

EndNote %0 International E-Journal of Advances in Social Sciences A CHRONICLE OF CALCUTTA JEWRY %A Sayan LODH %T A CHRONICLE OF CALCUTTA JEWRY %D 2020 %J IJASOS- International E-journal of Advances in Social Sciences %P 2411-183X-2411-183X %V 5 %N 15 %R doi: 10.18769/ijasos.592119 %U 10.18769/ijasos.592119