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Josef Kastein Collection

Identifier: LBIJER 119

Scope and Contents

The collection holds materials by and pertaining to the writer Josef Kastein (1890-1946).

Folder 1 contains the essay titled "Ketzer und Glaeubige. Ein Beitrag zur gesellschaftlichen Kritik des juedischen Palaestina" (manuscript/typescript, 69 pp.) by Josef Kastein, which consists of an introduction ("Vorwort") (handwritten, 7 pp.) and seems to be composed o several separate chapters titled "Der Ketzer und der Glaeubige von heute" (typescript, 15 pp.), "Messianismus und heimliche Rebellion" (typescript, 15 pp.), "Maranentum" (typescript, 17 pp.), and "Europa und Religion als Vernunft" (typescript, 15 pp.). They are presumably manuscripts of lectures, their exact order is unclear. All chapters show extensive handwritten notes, corrections, additions, and cuts.

Folder 2 contains the photocopied manuscript of a children's book in its German original (untitled) and English translation titled "Michael and the Book. A Palestinian Fairytale" (75 pp.) translated into English by Shulamit Kastein, Josef Kastein's wife.

Folder 3 contains letters by Kastein, materials pertaining to a Kastein collection in Bremen, copies of drawings showing Kastein and two photographs of him.


  • undated, ca. 1930-1988

Language of Materials

This collection is in German and English.

Access Restrictions

This collection is located at LBI Jerusalem. For information on accessing the collection please visit

Biographical Note

Writer and lawyer Josef Kastein was born as Julius Katzenstein in Bremen in 1890. He practiced law in Bremen from 1919 to 1927. After moving to Switzerland in 1928, Kastein gave up his legal career and started writing under the pseudonym "Josef Kastein."

Several years later, in ca. 1932 he immigrated to Palestine and settled in Haifa.

Josef Kastein died in Haifa on June 13, 1946.

His most known work is titled "Eine Geschichte der Juden" published in Berlin in 1931.


3 Folders


The collection holds materials by and pertaining to the writer Josef Kastein (1890-1946).

Related Materials

The original German copy of the manuscript in Folder 2 is held by the Archive of the Leo Baeck Institute New York (Josef Kastein and Shulamith Kastein Collection, Call No.: AR 7227).

Language of description
Script of description

Repository Details

Part of the Leo Baeck Institute Repository

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