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Barbara Hahn

Barbara Hahn is Distinguished Professor of German at Vanderbilt University. Her most recent English publications include The Jewess Pallas Athena: This Too a Theory of Modernity and an essay on salons in Berlin around 1800.

Articles by this author

Rahel Levin Varnhagen

Varnhagen is remembered in Jewish history as one of a handful of Jewish women who ran intellectual salons in Central Europe, especially Berlin, beginning in the relatively liberal period before the defeat of Napoleon.

Margarete Susman

A writer whose works span the bridge between literature and theory, Margarete Susman's writings are as heterogeneous as her interests.

Lazarus, Nahida Ruth

In 1891 Nahida Ruth Lazarus published The Jewish Woman, a product of her fundamental interest in both feminism and Judaism, which aroused enormous interest. It was and remains an important source book for women’s studies, used and cited by countless female and male authors.

Henriette Herz

Henriette Herz was already in her fifties when the opportunity arose to fulfill her life’s dream: She traveled to Italy, where she spent almost two years together with her two close friends Dorothea Schlegel and Caroline von Humboldt (1766–1829; wife of Wilhelm). There, far away from Germany, where she had converted from Judaism to Protestantism prior to her departure, she began to write an autobiography. In the early nineteenth century no other German Jewish woman tried to preserve her life in this way.

Sophie Von Grotthuss

In her extensive unpublished correspondence with Wolfgang von Goethe, Sophie von Grotthuss (born Sara Meyer in Berlin) describes her difficult farewell to Judaism. Her mother, a woman possessed by an unnatural hatred of religion, “married [her] off at the age of fifteen to a wretched creature who for ten years made [her] life a hell.” As she frequently wrote, the marriage in 1778 to the merchant Lippman Wulf completely destroyed her. After Wulf’s death in 1788, she revived, traveled a great deal, particularly to the spas of Bohemia, where in 1795 she became acquainted with Goethe, with whom she corresponded until 1824. In 1799 she married the Livonian Baron Ferdinand Dietrich von Grotthuss, who was soon impoverished and became postmaster in Oranienburg. In her later years she was a prolific author. In an unpublished letter to Goethe, dated August 14, 1824, she refers to a novel, a play and several stories, which she was sending him for approval. Apart from the story, “Sophie ou la difference de l’Education,” two unpublished manuscripts, “Opinions of a German Woman, written in Dresden in the summer of 1814,” and a play, The German Governess, her works appear to have been lost.

Lucie Domeier

As a young woman Lucie Domeier (born Esther Gad) probably led a traditional Jewish life. Born in Breslau circa 1767, she married a merchant, Bernard, and bore two children—a son, Jonas, in c. 1791, and a daughter, Jeanette, in 1795. However, we soon find signs of her in the world of educated women, writers and philosophers.

How to cite this page

Jewish Women's Archive. "Barbara Hahn." (Viewed on September 19, 2019) <https://qa.jwa.org/encyclopedia/author/hahn-barbara>.

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