Eine Pflicht der Humanitat und Ehre der deutschen Judenheit

Translated title of the contribution: A humanitarian duty and a matter of honour for German Jewry

Claudia Prestel

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review


In 1908, in collaboration with the Bnei Briss, the German Association of Israelite Communities founded an institution for intellectually disabled Jewish children in Beelitz with the aim of educating 7-14-year-olds, using therapeutic pedagogy. The institution was part of the philanthropic efforts undertaken by German Jewry in that period. It was set up in the wake of the German Kaiser s call to found more philanthropic institutions, and its establishment is indicative of the efforts at integration being made by German Jewry. In their fund-raising material, the German Association of Israelite Communities stressed the loyalty and patriotism of German Jewry and described the establishment of the institution as a humanitarian duty and a matter of honour for German Jewry . It was, therefore, demands from the non-Jewish world that led to the foundation of a Jewish institution; however, its establishment was also symbolic of the struggle against anti-Semitism and indicative both of German Jewry s dissimilation and their efforts at integration. The article investigates the struggle of Jewish parents to have their children admitted to the institution, the philosophy and teaching methods of the director Sally Bein (1881-1942) and his wife Friederike Rebeka Bein (1883-1942), the background of the students, the causes of intellectual disability, as well as the disagreements that occurred between parents, teachers and the director. The article also discusses the successes and failures of therapeutic pedagogy.
Translated title of the contributionA humanitarian duty and a matter of honour for German Jewry
Original languageGerman
Pages (from-to)167 - 206
Number of pages40
JournalMedizin, Gesellschaft, und Geschichte. Beiheft : Jahrbuch des Instituts fur Geschichte der Medizin der Robert Bosch Stiftung
Publication statusPublished - 2014

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