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1 The Chosen Few NES 20 Conference 14/12/2012 Moscow.

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1 1 The Chosen Few NES 20 Conference 14/12/2012 Moscow

2 2 Ch C.E. to 1492: How Many Jews Were There and Where and How Did They Live? Ch. 2 Were the Jews a Persecuted Minority? Ch. 3 The People of the Book, 200 B.C.E.–200 Ch. 4 The Economics of Hebrew Literacy in a World of Farmers Ch. 5 Jews in the Talmud Era, 200–650: The Chosen Few Ch. 6 From Farmers to Merchants, 750–1150 Ch. 7Educated Wandering Jews, 800–1250 Ch. 8Segregation or Choice? From Merchants to Moneylenders, 1000–1500 Ch. 9The Mongol Shock: Can Judaism Survive When Trade and Urban Economies Collapse Ch to Today: Open Questions

3 3 We document three puzzles Jewish population dynamics decreased5.5 to 1.5 M decreased1.2 to M Occupational selection ( , Muslim Middle East) Jews left farming and entered urban, skilled occupations Jewish Diaspora and minority status ( ) The migrations of Jewish *skills*

4 4 Jewish population dynamics Land of Israel Mesopotamia Egypt __ Syria manysomefew Asia Minor manysomefew Eastern Europe__ Western Europe some few Total Jewish Pop Total Population J pop / total pop9.1%6.8%5.0%3.3%2.8%2.1%

5 5 Jewish Population Dynamics Land of Israel0.002……… Mesopotamia, Persia __ Egypt, North Africa0.07__ Syria0.02__ Balkans, Eastern Europe __0.09 Western Europe __0.510 Total Jewish Population __ Total Population70__ 87.5 Jewish as % of total pop1.6%__ 1%

6 6 Jewish occupational transition TimeLocationFarmers (%) Crafts, Trade, Money lending (%) 1 – 400Land of Israel Mesopotamia Egypt Syria Asia Minor and Balkans Western Europe Land of Israel Mesopotamia Egypt Syria Asia Minor and Balkans Western Europe

7 7 Ch C.E. to 1492: How Many Jews Were There and Where and How Did They Live? Ch. 2 Were the Jews a Persecuted Minority? Ch. 3 The People of the Book, 200 B.C.E.–200 Ch. 4 The Economics of Hebrew Literacy in a World of Farmers Ch. 5 Jews in the Talmud Era, 200–650: The Chosen Few Ch. 6 From Farmers to Merchants, 750–1150 Ch. 7Educated Wandering Jews, 800–1250 Ch. 8Segregation or Choice? From Merchants to Moneylenders, 1000–1500 Ch. 9The Mongol Shock: Can Judaism Survive When Trade and Urban Economies Collapse Ch to Today: Open Questions

8 8 Jewish Population Dynamics 65 C.E from 5.5 to 1 M Common answer: Jews were oppressed and persecuted… Occupational Selection to today Common answer: Restrictions on minority… Jewish Diaspora and Minority Status Common answer: Jews were forced to leave… The Chosen Few: Why?

9 9 Economic Restrictions (e.g., Cecil Roth) Persecutions & Portable Human Capital (e.g., Brenner & Keefer) The Economics of Small Minorities (e.g., Weber ; Kuznets; Slezkine) Why are the Jews merchants, urban dwellers, entrepreneurs, money lenders and doctors?

10 10 No restrictions in Muslim Middle East TimeLocationFarmers (%) Crafts, Trade, Money lending (%) 1 – 400Land of Israel Mesopotamia Egypt Syria Asia Minor and Balkans Western Europe Land of Israel Mesopotamia Egypt Syria Asia Minor and Balkans Western Europe

11 11 Jews were always minority, regardless of occupation TimeLocationFarmers (%) Crafts, Trade, Money lending (%) 1 – 400Land of Israel Mesopotamia Egypt Syria Asia Minor and Balkans Western Europe Land of Israel Mesopotamia Egypt Syria Asia Minor and Balkans Western Europe

12 Is there a common factor behind the three historical patterns? Our answer A shift in the religious norm after 70 brought these long-term economic and demographic outcomes 12

13 13 Ch C.E. to 1492: How Many Jews Were There and Where and How Did They Live? Ch. 2 Were the Jews a Persecuted Minority? Ch. 3 The People of the Book, 200 B.C.E. – 200 Ch. 4 The Economics of Hebrew Literacy in a World of Farmers Ch. 5 Jews in the Talmud Era, 200–650: The Chosen Few Ch. 6 From Farmers to Merchants, 750–1150 Ch. 7Educated Wandering Jews, 800–1250 Ch. 8Segregation or Choice? From Merchants to Moneylenders, 1000–1500 Ch. 9The Mongol Shock: Can Judaism Survive When Trade and Urban Economies Collapse Ch to Today: Open Questions

14 14 First historical accident, BCE – – 200 Many religious groups (Sadducees, Pharisees, Essenes, Zealots) Pharisees: stress the study of Written and Oral Torah (Law) Temple in Jerusalem destroyed by Romans Pharisees became religious leaders Leadership of rabbis The Mishna (c. 200) 6 volumes of rules for daily life About 64 Religious norm: fathers must send sons to school to learn the Torah Sacrifices replaced with study of the Torah in synagogue From 200 ammei ha-aretz (illiterate people) considered outcast

15 15 First historical accident, BCE – – 200 Many religious groups (Sadducees, Pharisees, Essenes, Zealots) Pharisees: stress the study of Written and Oral Torah (Law) Temple in Jerusalem destroyed by Romans Pharisees became religious leaders Leadership of rabbis The Mishna (c. 200) 6 volumes of rules for daily life About 64 Religious norm: fathers must send sons to school to learn the Torah Sacrifices replaced with study of the Torah in synagogue From 200 ammei ha-aretz (illiterate people) considered outcast

16 16 First historical accident, BCE – – 200 Many religious groups (Sadducees, Pharisees, Essenes, Zealots) Pharisees: stress the study of Written and Oral Torah (Law) Temple in Jerusalem destroyed by Romans Pharisees became religious leaders Leadership of rabbis The Mishna (c. 200) 6 volumes of rules for daily life About 64 Religious norm: fathers must send sons to school to learn the Torah Sacrifices replaced with study of the Torah in synagogue From 200 ammei ha-aretz (illiterate people) considered outcast

17 17 Ch C.E. to 1492: How Many Jews Were There and Where and How Did They Live? Ch. 2 Were the Jews a Persecuted Minority? Ch. 3 The People of the Book, 200 B.C.E.–200 Ch. 4 The Economics of Hebrew Literacy in a World of Farmers Ch. 5 Jews in the Talmud Era, 200–650: The Chosen Few Ch. 6 From Farmers to Merchants, 750–1150 Ch. 7Educated Wandering Jews, 800–1250 Ch. 8Segregation or Choice? From Merchants to Moneylenders, 1000–1500 Ch. 9The Mongol Shock: Can Judaism Survive When Trade and Urban Economies Collapse Ch to Today: Open Questions

18 Based on economic theory: What are the implications of the change in religious norms? Model: Hebrew literacy has no economic returns for subsistence farmers but religious (utility) returns for Jews. School is costly. convertJewish farmers decide whether to send boys to school (synagogue) and whether to convert to other religions Jews are heterogeneous in religiosity, income, ability, etc. Result 1: Some Jewish farmers educate their boys. Non-Jews farmers do not educate their boys. Cost of education cause some Jewish farmers to convert - Who? low attachment, low ability, low income: ammei-haaretz… Implication: In the long run Judaism cannot survive in a subsistence farming society. 18

19 Model (continued) Result 2: Jewish farmers who learn in synagogue to read (write) have a comparative advantage in occupations and locations in which reading, writing contracts and communication have high economic returns. 19

20 20 Model Two-period overlapping generations model with no population growth 1 st period: the child receives education (e s ) 2 nd period: the adult decides his religion (j,n), and child's education Before 200 CE: Jews and non-Jews have same level of education and income After 200: change in Jewish religious preferences

21 21 Jewish individual u j (c, e s ; e, x) = log c + x(e+1)e s - ε h Jewish individual who converts u jn (c, e s ; e, x) = log c – πx Non-Jewish individual u (c, e s ; e, x=0) = log c x (>0)exogenous taste parameter Educational reform: interaction of x with e s and e Utility function

22 22 Cost of childs education γ (e s ) θ γ >0, θ >1 At community level –operating costs of synagogue, teacher's salary, cost of books At individual level –child's intellectual ability –opportunity cost of time the child spends in school Education does not affect productivity and earnings in farming Budget constraintc + γ (e s ) θ + τ rF w F

23 23 Testable implications on childrens education e s = 0 if x(e+1) < ( γθ ) / (w F – γ - τ jF ) e s 1 otherwise, and e s solves the equation x(e+1) = ( γθ (e s ) θ -1 ) / (w F - γ (e s ) θ - τ jF ) At the community level – γ large in small Jewish communities –negative shocks lower w F At the individual level –families with low-ability children –families with high opportunity cost of sending children to school –fathers with low x or low e

24 24 Jewish farmers: conversion A Jewish farmer converts if log(w F - γ (e s * ) θ - τ jF ) + x(e+1)e s * - ε h < log(w F - τ nF ) - πx Suppose τ jF = τ nF 1.Farmers who do not educate their sons, convert if ε πx 0 2.F armers who do not educate their sons, do not convert if ε < πx 3. Farmers who educate their sons, do not convert even if π = 0

25 25 Testable implications on conversions and Jewish population dynamics At a given point in time: Heterogeneity among Jews (x, γ, θ, e ), some Jewish farmers do not educate their children and convert More conversions occur when aggregate economic conditions are bad (low w F, high τ rF ) and in small communities (high γ ) In the long-run, Judaism cannot survive in a subsistence farming society as Jewish farming population is decreasing. Reduction in Jewish population can be halted: 1.with increased demand for literate occupations: Expansion of urbanization and trade 2. with migrations to opportunities

26 26 Ch C.E. to 1492: How Many Jews Were There and Where and How Did They Live? Ch. 2 Were the Jews a Persecuted Minority? Ch. 3 The People of the Book, 200 B.C.E.–200 Ch. 4 The Economics of Hebrew Literacy in a World of Farmers Ch. 5 Jews in the Talmud Era, 200–650: The Chosen Few Ch. 6 From Farmers to Merchants, 750–1150 Ch. 7Educated Wandering Jews, 800–1250 Ch. 8Segregation or Choice? From Merchants to Moneylenders, 1000–1500 Ch. 9The Mongol Shock: Can Judaism Survive When Trade and Urban Economies Collapse Ch to Today: Open Questions

27 27 Jews in the Talmud Era ( ): The Chosen Few [childrens education] In subsistence farming economy: investment in children's education is a costly religious sacrifice with no economic return A typical familys budget in Roman Palestine –food expenses = 40-50% –taxes = 30% –little was left to buy clothing, books, paying teachers and build synagogue

28 28 Cost of living (in denarii), 1 st -3 rd centuries Items in a household budgetLand of Israel EgyptBabylon Monthly wage of agricultural worker Monthly wage of urban skilled worker Monthy wage of boy on farm work Monthly bread expenses (family of four) Cattle (ox or cow) Suit/cloak30--- Monthly rent of a house4--- Book Source: Sperber (1965; 1967)

29 29 Despite being costly, primary education/literacy became spread in Jewish communities from 200 to 650 EVIDENCE Many rulings in the Talmud on school and teacher - Judaism unique Archeological findings on synagogues Growth of academies in Babylon: more students with primary education The Kallah From 6th century: Responsa

30 30 Sample of synagogues, ca Century Locations 3 rd Baram, Gush Halav, Horvat, Horvat Shema, Kefar Kana, Nevoraya, En-Gedi, Eshtemoa 3 rd -4 th Chorazin, Gush Halav, Hammat Gader, Hammath Tiberias, Khirbet Shema, Maoz Hayyim, Meiron, Nabratein, Rehov, Horvat Sumaqa, Horvat Rimmon 4 th Arbel, Capernaum, Horvat ha-Amudin, Meroth, Beth Alpha, Beth Shean, Maoz Hayim, Gaza, Horvat Susiya, Naaran, Zuminra 3 rd, 5 th Anim, Aphik, Dabbura, Kefar Hananiah 5 th Assalieh, En Neshut, Horvat Kanef, Katzrin, Huseifa, Hirbet Amudin, Yaifia, Sepphoris

31 31 Evidence from population dynamics, c Evidence from literary and epigraphic sources, Evidence from literary sources, Jews in the Talmud Era ( ): The Chosen Few [conversions]

32 Land of Israel Mesopotamia Egypt __ Syria manysomefew Asia Minor manysomefew Eastern Europe__ Western Europe some few Total Jewish Pop Total Population J pop / total pop9.1%6.8%5.0%3.3%2.8%2.1% Great revolt, Temple (70) Revolt in Egypt (115) Bar Kokhba revolt (135)

33 33 Evidence from population dynamics, c Evidence from literary and epigraphic sources, –Locations with Christians included also Jewish populations: Only from 150 Christians were not considered Jewish. Evidence from literary sources, –Laws protecting Jewish converts Jews in the Talmud Era ( ): The Chosen Few [conversions]

34 34 Conversions, Competitors: Christianity and Greek-Hellenistic pagan religion Christianity emerged as one of the groups within Judaism Under the influence of Paul, Christianity abolished many requirements of Judaism (e.g., reading the Torah) Only after the Bar Kokhba revolt in 135, Jewish leaders declared Jewish Christians to be outside the Jewish fold Three main patterns in the spread of Christianity: New Jews

35 35 First, before 325 Christianity penetrated towns, villages, and rural districts with large Jewish communities, whereas it spread slowly or not at all in areas where there were few or no Jewish settlements Group LocationsExtent of Christianity IAll provinces in Asia Minor, Thracia, villages in Land of Israel, Edessa in western Mesopotamia Nearly half of the population was Christian IIVillages in Land of Israel, Syria, Egypt, North Africa, Thessaly, Macedonia, central and southern Italy, southern Gaul, Iberia A large segment of the population was Christian IIIGalilee, Phoenicia, Mesopotamia, western Persia, northern Italy, Balkans Christianity was thinly scattered IVEastern Persia, eastern Europe, Germany, central and northern Gaul, Belgium A small segment of the population was Christian

36 36 Second, Jews with a low attachment to Judaism (low x) are more likely to convert Outside the Land of Israel, Christianity grew primarily in locations where the Jewish settlements consisted of Hellenistic Jews and pagans who had converted to Judaism in earlier times (e.g., Syria, Greece, Egypt, Spain, Italy) Third, Jewish farmers with low earnings w F, as well as Jewish fathers with higher opportunity cost γ of educating their sons, are more likely to convert Most Jewish converts to Christianity were uneducated, low- income Jews

37 37 Evidence from population dynamics, c Evidence from literary and epigraphic sources, Evidence from literary sources, Jews in the Talmud Era ( ): The Chosen Few [conversions]

38 38 Conversions, Roman and Early Byzantine Empires Roman emperor Constantine opened the way for Christianity to spread among pagans and gentiles Neither Constantine nor subsequent emperors forced Jews to convert to Christianity Yet, some Jews voluntarily left Judaism from 4th to 7th century

39 39 YearsEmperorDecree ConstantineDeath penalty for Jews who harm Jewish converts to Christianity ValentinianJewish parents cannot disinherit children who converted to Christianity TheodosiusDeath penalty by fire for Jews who harm Jewish converts to Christianity HonoriusJewish converts to Christianity can revert to Judaism ArcadiusJews cannot become Christians for economic motives JustinianJewish parents cannot disinherit children who converted to Christianity

40 40 Mesopotamia Christianity spread among Mesopotamian Jewry during 4th and 5th centuries Jewish population shrank despite migrations from Land of Israel and Egypt Christians in Mesopotamia became as numerous as the Jews -- - a certain proportion of these Christians were converted Jews Land of Israel Mesopotamia Egypt few0.004

41 41 Consistent with the prediction of the model: Christianity spread where there were large Jewish communities not under the influence of rabbinic Judaism (low x) Christianity spread slowly where rabbinic Judaism was well established (high x) Group LocationsExtent of Christianity IAll provinces in Asia Minor, Thracia, villages in Land of Israel, Edessa and Arbela in western Mesopotamia Nearly half of the population was Christian IIVillages in Land of Israel, Syria, Egypt, North Africa, Thessaly, Macedonia, central and southern Italy, southern Gaul, Iberia A large segment of the population was Christian IIIGalilee, Phoenicia, Mesopotamia, western Persia, northern Italy, Balkans Christianity was thinly scattered IVEastern Persia, eastern Europe, Germany, central and northern Gaul, Belgium A small segment of the population was Christian

42 42 Ch C.E. to 1492: How Many Jews Were There and Where and How Did They Live? Ch. 2 Were the Jews a Persecuted Minority? Ch. 3 The People of the Book, 200 B.C.E.–200 Ch. 4 The Economics of Hebrew Literacy in a World of Farmers Ch. 5 Jews in the Talmud Era, 200–650: The Chosen Few Ch. 6 From Farmers to Merchants, 750–1150 Ch. 7Educated Wandering Jews, 800–1250 Ch. 8Segregation or Choice? From Merchants to Moneylenders, 1000–1500 Ch. 9The Mongol Shock: Can Judaism Survive When Trade and Urban Economies Collapse Ch to Today: Open Questions

43 43 If all Jews were literate in 650, why were they still farmers in 650? Given rural subsistence economies in 4 th -7 th centuries, literate Jewish farmers could not find urban skilled occupations

44 44 Second historical accident, c. 632 Mohammed established Islam and set the foundations of one of the largest, most urban, and commercially developed empires in history

45 45 Urbanization expanded in newly established Abbasid Empire 8 th – 9 th centuriesTotal Population (thousands) Baghdad6001,000 Samarra500 Basra Cairo300 ca Palermo150 Paris110 Seville80 Venice70 Granada60 Cordoba60

46 46 Jewish occupational transition: WHY? (it took 150 years --- consistent with other evidence) TimeLocationFarmers (%) Urban skilled occupations (%) 1 – 400Land of Israel Mesopotamia Egypt Syria Asia Minor and Balkans Western Europe Land of Israel Mesopotamia Egypt Syria Asia Minor and Balkans Western Europe

47 Why almost all Jews became urban dwellers (750 to 900)? 47 The Economic Return to Jewish Religious literacy Literacy: knowledge of one language – Hebrew – enable to learn other languages (Hebrew-Arabic, Hebrew-French, Ladino, Yiddish) based on Geniza documents. Language enables to write commercial contracts and loans across locations. Jewish law enables to implement agreements. The common language enables to expand mail network for religious, family and commercial contacts based on Jewish law and community penalties (Greif). The language enables Jewish artisans to write contracts for the production of shoes, clothes and other personal items

48 48 The theory of Jewish merchant: education and conversion Assumption: Merchants income increases from theirs and their son education Merchant's budget constraint: c + γ (e s ) θ + τ rM w F (1 + Ae s α e 1- α ) Results: Education: Jewish merchants invest more than non-Jewish merchants in children's education. WHY? Conversion: (i)If taxes for Jewish and non-Jewish merchant are the same – no Jewish merchant will convert. (ii)Over time, the proportion of merchants among Jews will increase.

49 49 The model for merchants Merchant's budget constraint c + γ (e s ) θ + τ rM w F (1 + Ae s α e 1- α ) Education Jewish merchants invest more than non-Jewish merchants in children's education. Why? Conversion (i) If τ jM = τ nM, no Jewish merchant will convert (ii) Over time, the proportion of merchants will increase

50 50 Education: tons of evidence from Genizah and Responsa ( ) of almost 100% literacy among Jews. No or few conversions of Jews from 700 to 1200 Jewish Population Dynamics c. 650c Land of Israel Mesopotamia and Persia Egypt and North Africa Syria Balkans, eastern Europe0.047 Western Europe Total Jewish Population Total Population J as % of total pop2.1%1.6%

51 51 Ch C.E. to 1492: How Many Jews Were There and Where and How Did They Live? Ch. 2 Were the Jews a Persecuted Minority? Ch. 3 The People of the Book, 200 B.C.E.–200 Ch. 4 The Economics of Hebrew Literacy in a World of Farmers Ch. 5 Jews in the Talmud Era, 200–650: The Chosen Few Ch. 6 From Farmers to Merchants, 750–1150 Ch. 7Educated Wandering Jews, 800–1250 Ch. 8Segregation or Choice? From Merchants to Moneylenders, 1000–1500 Ch. 9The Mongol Shock: Can Judaism Survive When Trade and Urban Economies Collapse Ch to Today: Open Questions

52 52 Voluntary Diaspora Migrations of Jewish *skills*, ca Main insight from the model Judaism can survive in the long run only if Jews can find occupations with high returns to their investment in education Historical evidence The voluntary migrations of Jewish people between 800 and 1250 support this argument

53 53 Migrations within the Muslim Empire ( ) voluntary and free Jewish craftsmen, traders, physicians, scholars from Mesopotamia and Persia settled in Syria, Egypt, Maghreb, Spain, and Sicily The golden age of Jewish history Migrations to western Europe ( ) voluntary and regulated Jews migrated to England, Flanders, France, Germany, Italy upon invitation by local rulers --- wealthy communities in hundreds of towns Because of high human capital and skills, Jews viewed as essential for economic growth No restrictions on Jewish economic activities

54 54 Sample of Medieval Charters CountryCityYear of charter Own Land TradeMoney Lending SpainBarcelona yes Tudela1116silentyes Toledo1222yes Valencia1250yes France---820yes silent silent yes England , 1170yes yes no GermanySpeyer1084, 1090yes Worms1074silentyessilent Worms1090, 1157yes Ratisbon1182, 1216, 1230 yes silent

55 55 The zenith of the Jewish Diaspora From the travel itinerary of Benjamin de Tudela (c. 1170) In Muslim Mesopotamia and Persia: 70 percent of world Jewry Muslim Iberian Peninsula: wealthy Jewish communities in hundreds of cities and towns (Sephardim) France, England, Germany: prominent Jewish communities in hundreds of locations (Ashkenazim) Jewish communities all over Italy, Bohemia, eastern Europe, Turkey, the Middle East, Egypt, the Maghreb, all the way to central Asia, China, and India

56 56

57 57 Genetic distance and conversions Contemporary Jewish populations show a closer genetic link to Jews from far away locations than to their neighboring non-Jewish populations Especially the Ashkenazi Jews of eastern Europe are genetically closer to Jews from the Middle East and North Africa, as well as to other Middle Eastern non-Jewish populations, than to eastern European non-Jewish populations This provides additional and independent evidence that there were no significant conversions to, and out of, Judaism once the Jews became merchants and migrated to western and then eastern Europe

58 58 Ch C.E. to 1492: How Many Jews Were There and Where and How Did They Live? Ch. 2 Were the Jews a Persecuted Minority? Ch. 3 The People of the Book, 200 B.C.E.–200 Ch. 4 The Economics of Hebrew Literacy in a World of Farmers Ch. 5 Jews in the Talmud Era, 200–650: The Chosen Few Ch. 6 From Farmers to Merchants, 750–1150 Ch. 7Educated Wandering Jews, 800–1250 Ch. 8Segregation or Choice? From Merchants to Moneylenders, 1000–1500 Ch. 9The Mongol Shock: Can Judaism Survive When Trade and Urban Economies Collapse Ch to Today: Open Questions

59 Why Money Lending? Money lending is another form of commerce – highly sophisticated; need contracts; enforcement; arbitration; capital. High interest rates on short term lending. Arbitrage among locations. High risk and high return Permits and taxes to rulers – set in Privileges. Was it due to land restrictions? NO! Was it due to usury bans on Christians? 59

60 60 TimeLocation 325Roman EmpireChurch prohibits clergy from charging interests on loans EuropeChurch extends usury ban to the laity --- ban not enforced Muslim EmpireQuran prohibits Moslems from charging interest on loans 750 – 900Mesopotamia and Persia Jews left farming, moved to urban centers, and entered nearly 450 occupations (crafts, trade, moneylending) EuropeJews migrated from the Middle East to Europe as urban dwellers specialized in crafts, trade, and money lending From 1100EuropeJews became prominent in moneylending. Jewish scholars (e.g., Rashi ) issued many rulings to regulate money lending during 11th and 12th centuries Europe Church strictly enforces usury ban on Christians Craft and merchant guilds began growing Guilds dominated manufacturing and commerce Restrictions on Jewish land ownership in some charters

61 61 Ch 1Jewish population, locations, and occupations Ch 2A persecuted minority? Ch 3The people of the book (c. 200 BCE 200 CE) Ch 4The economics of Hebrew literacy in a world of farmers Ch 5Jews in the Talmud era ( CE): the chosen few Ch 6From farmers to merchants (c ) Ch 7The educated wandering Jew (c ) Ch 8From merchants to moneylenders: selection or segregation? Ch 9The Mongol shock: Can Judaism survive when trade and urban economies collapse? Ch to today: open questions

62 62 Third Historical Accident, 1258 The Mongol Shock (Could the Jews be farmers in the long-run?) The Mongols invaded Persia (earliest 1220) and Mesopotamia in and destroyed the urban economy Because of massacres, starvation, epidemics, total population was reduced by half Jewish population shrank from about 800 thousands to nearly thousands

63 63 Jewish Population Dynamics Land of Israel0.002……… Mesopotamia, Persia __ Egypt, North Africa0.07__ Syria0.02__ Balkans, Eastern Europe __0.09 Western Europe __0.510 Total Jewish Population __ Total Population70__ 87.5 Jewish as % of total pop1.6%__ 1%

64 64 No evidence they migrated in huge numbers to western Europe (migrations to Europe were regulated) Death rate from starvation and epidemics similar to local population Jewish death toll from massacres by Mongols was lower The much larger reduction in Jewish population in Muslim Middle East was the outcome of voluntary conversions Conversions among low-income Jews when the economy became a subsistence farming economy support our main insight

65 65 Ch C.E. to 1492: How Many Jews Were There and Where and How Did They Live? Ch. 2 Were the Jews a Persecuted Minority? Ch. 3 The People of the Book, 200 B.C.E.–200 Ch. 4 The Economics of Hebrew Literacy in a World of Farmers Ch. 5 Jews in the Talmud Era, 200–650: The Chosen Few Ch. 6 From Farmers to Merchants, 750–1150 Ch. 7Educated Wandering Jews, 800–1250 Ch. 8Segregation or Choice? From Merchants to Moneylenders, 1000–1500 Ch. 9The Mongol Shock: Can Judaism Survive When Trade and Urban Economies Collapse Ch to Today: Open Questions

66 to Today: Open Questions Circa 1492 world Jewry: less than 1 million people –450,000 Sephardim (urban skilled occupations) Spain, North Africa, Greece, Turkey, Middle East, Iraq, Persia –450,000 Ashkenazim (urban skilled occupations) –Germany, Netherlands, Italy, eastern Europe, Russia Circa 1938world Jewry: about 16.5 million –2.2 million Sephardic Jews –14.3 million Ashkenazi Jews (spectacular growth in eastern Europe) Why this divergent demographic trend?

67 67 Kuznets (1963): An economic puzzle? CountryYear % Jews in Non-agricultural jobs % Non-Jews in Non-agricultural jobs Poland Soviet Union United States Latvia Germany Czechoslovakia Hungary Rumania Bulgaria Canada

68 to Today: Open Questions Jews make 0.2 percent of the world population, and … –54 percent of the world chess champions –27 percent of the Nobel physics laureates –31 percent of the medicine laureates Jews are 2 percent of US population, and … –21 percent of the Ivy League students bodies –26 percent of the Kennedy Center honorees –37 percent of Academy Award winning directors –38 percent of those on a recent Business Week list of leading philanthropists –51 percent of the Pulitzer Prize winners for nonfiction Why this persistence in economic and intellectual success?

69 69 Why are the Jews a small population of merchants, entrepreneurs, bankers, financiers, physicians, lawyers, university professors? (… Rothschild, Ricardo, etc)

70 to Today: Open Questions Nowadays, world Jewry is about 13 million people 40% in the United States(A) 15% in western Europe(A) 5% in the rest of the world (A) 40% in Israel(B) –Jews in (A) display occupational selection (high-skill jobs) and have higher earnings than the rest of the population –Jews in (B) have occupational structure similar to that of any small European country or that of the general population of the United States Why this different occupational and earning structure?

71 A growing literature Interactions cultural values religious rules economic outcomes social norms –Barro & McCleary; Guiso, Sapienza, and Zingales; Iannaccone; Becker & Woesserman –Doepke & Zilibotti –Greif; Mokyr; Temin; Tabellini 71


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