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(hä'skəlä`), [Heb.,=enlightenment] Jewish movement in Europe active from the 1770s to the 1880s. Beginning in Germany in the circle of the German Jewish philosopher Moses Mendelssohn and spreading to Galicia and Russia, the Haskalah called for increased secularization of Jewish life through secular learning, a concern for esthetics, and linguistic assimilation (especially in Germany), all in the cause of speeding Jewish emancipation. The proponents of the Haskalah (maskilim) established schools and published periodicals and other works. By publishing in Hebrew, they contributed to the revival of the language.


See J. Katz, Tradition and Crisis (1961).

References in periodicals archive ?
7) Reared in a Hasidic family in the Ukraine, Ahad HaAm became a maskil in his adolescence, as did many of his contemporaries, but still maintained, albeit in secularized form, the unique sense of self and his mission to save his people.
For a recent study of Wessely's ambivalent ideological position see Edward Breuer, "Naphtali Herz Wessely and the Cultural Dislocations of an Eighteenth-Century Maskil," in New Perspectives on the Haskalah, edited by Shmuel Feiner and David Sorkin (London: Littman Library of Jewish Civilization, 2001), pp.
It was a new language and a new history, and it was my supreme good fortune that the Hebrew teacher my parents found for me was a scholar, a real maskil, who responded to my childish enthusiasm," he recalls.
2) It was his exposure to Maimonides that finally changed him from a mitnaged to a maskil.
Goldfaden's father, a maskil, a disciple of the Haskalah, who had already had his son tutored at home in Russian and German, gladly turned the boy over to an institution whose secular nature deterred many other Jewish parents.
I wrote and write in Hebrew because my father was a maskil, and he hired a Hebrew teacher for me and my friend, Yerahmiel Mermelstein.
It is the story of a Hasidic boy's flight from wrobel to ankor through the pages and pathways of Jewish history to his venerable retirement as a Zionist maskil in Jerusalem.
In this isolated shtetl, where Dik was virtually the only maskil, he became increasingly convinced of the necessity for making Jews critically aware of the superstition and primitivism that pervaded their traditional way of life.
Great-Grandfather David Barg was a maskil, an enlightened follower of the Haskalah movement.
The young Russian maskil, who had gained a modicum of sophistication, now yearned for a fuller secular education, but the tsarist government would not open the doors of the universities to the Jews.
Throughout my childhood, it never occurred to me to identify those books as being a characteristic collection of a maskil (one enlightened, in Hebrew and general culture), because I never knew the term, and it certainly was not one likely to be discussed in our household.
Given the fact that this exiled maskil was living in America between two tides--Orthodoxy and assimilationism--neither of which could satisfy him, he chose his own peculiar method to communicate a third set of values to a grandchild whom he would never know beyond that child's preschool years.