The Hasidic “Cell”. The Organization of Hasidic Groups at the Level of the Community

Marcin Wodziński

Abstrakt

This article analyses the social structure and composition of Hasidic groups at the level of the community, i.e. the elementary social unit of the Hasidic movement. As it demonstrates, the emergence of such groups usually followed the pattern of several stages, beginning with splintering individuals escaping from the control of the kahal, followed by the establishment of a Hasidic prayer hall, known as a shtibl, by far the most important institution of Hasidism outside of the Hasidic court. The two most typical compositions of the Hasidic group centered around the shtibl were peer groups, usually dominated by young men, and interest groups. Most importantly, women were consistently excluded from any participation in the Hasidic group and its activities.
 

Słowa kluczowe: Hasidism, the tsadik, the tsadik court, women
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