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The Brothers Aaron and Isaak Steinberg’s Contribution to the History of the Russian-Jewish Berlin

  Prof. Dr. Vladimir Khazan, Hebrew University of Jerusalem

The brothers Steinberg are a unique historical phenomenon: on the one hand, both were attaching to Judaism (observance of the patriarchal Jewish traditions, kashrut, Sabbath, etc.) and, on the other hand, they directly involved and took part in the crucial events of the revolutionary Russia.

Isaak was a member of the Social-Revolutionary party and a Minister of Justice in the first coalition Bolshevist government, Aaron belonged to the group of founders and organizers of Volfila (Vol’naia filosofskaia akademiia) [Free Philosophical Academy]—the last citadel of the intellectual freedom in Soviet Russia, and was its secretary.

Berlin period in their biographies, especially in the frame of the topic “Russian-Jewish Berlin,” has been researched not completely. There are many aspects, like the Karsavin’s Philosophical-Religion study group which hitherto have not clear description and adequate interpretation.

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