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“We left forever and into the unknown”

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TitleInfo
Title
“We left forever and into the unknown”
SubTitle
Soviet Jewish immigrants’ experiences of transit migration
Name (type = personal)
NamePart (type = family)
Veksler
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Inga P.
NamePart (type = date)
1984-
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Inga P. Veksler
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author
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Goldstein
NamePart (type = given)
Daniel M.
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Daniel M. Goldstein
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Advisory Committee
Role
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chair
Name (type = personal)
NamePart (type = family)
Mascia-Lees
NamePart (type = given)
Fran
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Fran Mascia-Lees
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Advisory Committee
Role
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internal member
Name (type = personal)
NamePart (type = family)
Berg
NamePart (type = given)
Ulla
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Ulla Berg
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Advisory Committee
Role
RoleTerm (authority = RULIB)
internal member
Name (type = personal)
NamePart (type = family)
Shandler
NamePart (type = given)
Jeffrey
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Jeffrey Shandler
Affiliation
Advisory Committee
Role
RoleTerm (authority = RULIB)
outside member
Name (type = corporate)
NamePart
Rutgers University
Role
RoleTerm (authority = RULIB)
degree grantor
Name (type = corporate)
NamePart
Graduate School - New Brunswick
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RoleTerm (authority = RULIB)
school
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Text
Genre (authority = marcgt)
theses
OriginInfo
DateCreated (qualifier = exact)
2014
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2014-10
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2014
Place
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xx
Language
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eng
Abstract (type = abstract)
As a result of the geopolitical divisions of the Cold War, approximately 185,000 Soviet Jews traveled from the Soviet Union through Austria and Italy between 1971 and 1990 in order to immigrate to countries other than Israel. This dissertation examines U.S. immigrants’ experiences of this period of transit migration as well as their extant connections to it through semi-structured interviews, archival research, immigrant-published literature, and the consideration of the experiences of the ethnographer (as a member of the 1.5 generation) and her family. This interview-based, intimate ethnography demonstrates that for Soviet Jewish Americans, the places of transit migration are the start and finish lines of reclaiming dignity as immigrants from the Second World. In Austria and Italy, they experienced shock, shame, chaotic travel, imposed waiting, and the realization of their loss of social status. But there were opportunities for hope, too: enchantment, enjoyment, and creativity, which pointed to the subject-positions they one day expected to embody. Therefore transit migration was marked not only by loss and a reckoning with one’s past but a stretching forward toward a future that would elaborate on and redeem its hardships. Immigrants’ present-day interactions with transit migration—through narrative, reflection, and return trips—illustrate that the embodied experiences of passage continue to form part of their lived experience, as markers of self-worth. As the first study to examine Soviet Jews’ transit migration, it contributes valuable ethnographic and historical knowledge about this group. By attending to migration as both social process and experience, it reveals transit migration to be a distinct category of experience with features parallel to other migrations marked by unfixed immigrant legal statuses. This thesis also identifies a relation to the past that is not cast as either traumatic or nostalgic. Instead, it points to a range of embodied relations to the past: neither determinative, inaccessible, nor only present-focused, but emergent and dynamic, allowing for both re-experiencing and connections to earlier, anticipatory desires. This dissertation therefore portrays migration to be a complex and shifting experience that gets continually written and re-written as it is incorporated into the broader trajectory of one’s life.
Subject (authority = RUETD)
Topic
Anthropology
Subject (authority = ETD-LCSH)
Topic
Jews, Soviet--Migrations--History--20th century
Subject (authority = ETD-LCSH)
Topic
Jews, Soviet--United States
Subject (authority = ETD-LCSH)
Topic
Emigration and immigration--Social aspects
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TitleInfo
Title
Rutgers University Electronic Theses and Dissertations
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ETD
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ETD_5865
PhysicalDescription
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electronic resource
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application/pdf
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text/xml
Extent
1 online resource (vi, 279 p.)
Note (type = degree)
Ph.D.
Note (type = bibliography)
Includes bibliographical references
Note (type = statement of responsibility)
by Inga P. Veksler
RelatedItem (type = host)
TitleInfo
Title
Graduate School - New Brunswick Electronic Theses and Dissertations
Identifier (type = local)
rucore19991600001
Location
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NjNbRU
Identifier (type = doi)
doi:10.7282/T3W097K3
Genre (authority = ExL-Esploro)
ETD doctoral
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Rights

RightsDeclaration (ID = rulibRdec0006)
The author owns the copyright to this work.
RightsHolder (type = personal)
Name
FamilyName
Veksler
GivenName
Inga
MiddleName
P.
Role
Copyright Holder
RightsEvent
Type
Permission or license
DateTime (encoding = w3cdtf); (qualifier = exact); (point = start)
2014-09-30 03:15:26
AssociatedEntity
Name
Inga Veksler
Role
Copyright holder
Affiliation
Rutgers University. Graduate School - New Brunswick
AssociatedObject
Type
License
Name
Author Agreement License
Detail
I hereby grant to the Rutgers University Libraries and to my school the non-exclusive right to archive, reproduce and distribute my thesis or dissertation, in whole or in part, and/or my abstract, in whole or in part, in and from an electronic format, subject to the release date subsequently stipulated in this submittal form and approved by my school. I represent and stipulate that the thesis or dissertation and its abstract are my original work, that they do not infringe or violate any rights of others, and that I make these grants as the sole owner of the rights to my thesis or dissertation and its abstract. I represent that I have obtained written permissions, when necessary, from the owner(s) of each third party copyrighted matter to be included in my thesis or dissertation and will supply copies of such upon request by my school. I acknowledge that RU ETD and my school will not distribute my thesis or dissertation or its abstract if, in their reasonable judgment, they believe all such rights have not been secured. I acknowledge that I retain ownership rights to the copyright of my work. I also retain the right to use all or part of this thesis or dissertation in future works, such as articles or books.
RightsEvent
DateTime (encoding = w3cdtf); (qualifier = exact); (point = start)
2014-10-31
DateTime (encoding = w3cdtf); (qualifier = exact); (point = end)
2016-10-30
Type
Embargo
Detail
Access to this PDF has been restricted at the author's request. It will be publicly available after October 30th, 2016.
Copyright
Status
Copyright protected
Availability
Status
Open
Reason
Permission or license
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ETD
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windows xp
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