Re: Why was I told my mother's family were German Jews when they weren't? #austria-czech


Adam Turner
 

Probably what others have guessed (that people sometimes felt the need to fudge for the sake of putting on airs) is likeliest to be what happened in this case, but there were also certainly instances where Jews in Galicia were more "German" than Galician. I just learned about one of these cases yesterday: that of the father of the most famous school of economics crankery, Ludwig von Mises. He was born in L'vov in 1881 to a Jewish family that, by the time of his birth, had been elevated by Franz Joseph to the Austrian nobility. The family was highly cosmopolitan; von Mises's father Arthur was educated as an engineer in Switzerland, and he and many other members of his family spent much of their lives in Vienna. So by the time Ludwig was growing up, it seems pretty obvious that his family would have considered itself to have much more in common with the highly Germanized Vienna elite than it did with the typical Galitzianer artisan out in the sticks. 

Adam Turner

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