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 (09-007.04-F) -  Shelf Number: MDV 165

No streaming derivative is available.

Date: May 24, 2006

Participants: Abelsky, Zalman (Rabbi). Interviewed by Dov-Ber Kerler, Jeffrey Veidlinger, Moisei Lemster.

Location recorded: Chișinău, Chișinău Municipality, Moldova

Language: Yiddish, Russian

Culture Group: Jews, Yiddish-speakers, Moldovans

 Recording Content:   

This recording is a formal interview with Rabbi Zalman Abelsky. (Part 1 of 2. See MDV 166) (see also: MDV 147,148)

00:00:00 Abelsky speaks about his work, before discussing historiography with historical examples. He also addresses the difference between Hassidic and secular historical studies.
00:10:26 Abelsky addresses religious, Hasidic, life in Moscow during the postwar Soviet period. He specifically describes the underground organizational structure.
00:14:58 Abelsky talks about his work and letter exchanges today. He then returns to Hasidic life during the postwar Soviet period.
00:19:16 Abelsky addresses contemporary Jewish life in Chişinău, including financial support.
00:22:43 Abelsky speaks about his life after the collapse of the Soviet Union and reasons why he moved to Chişinău from Moscow. He was encouraged by the American Chabad organization "Ezrat achim."
00:24:56 Abelsky speaks about Hasidic life during the Napoleonic invasion. He specifically addresses Rabbi Baal HaTanya, (der Alter Rebbe) anticipating Napoleon's attacks to conquer Russia.
00:32:51 Abelsky talks about contemporary Hasidic life and reasons for the Hebrew translation of the French national anthem. Abelsky then chants Napoleon's march, which is traditional with Lubavitcher Hasidim to sing at the conclusion of the Ne'ilah service on Yom Kippur, before the sounding of the Shofar.
00:38:44 Abelsky addresses the differences between Russian and Polish Hasidism. He lists different Hasidic groups and their lifestyle. He then shares contemporary episodes from Hasidic life.
00:48:06 Abelsky addresses his childhood in Moscow and his family. Abelsky's father was a kosher butcher. He also addresses prewar holiday celebration and describes underground religious life before the war. Abelsky then addresses contemporary religious life.
00:55:08 Abelsky sings a Hasidic song in Russian, before addressing Moldovan Jewish culture.
00:57:50 Abelsky shares stories about his grandfather, who was the chief Hasidic rabbi of Moscow, he heard from different people. He then shares stories about prewar Hasidic life, he heard from his father.
01:02:16 End of recording.