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1864 May 16, - 1937 NATHAN BIRNBAUM (Mathias Acher) (Austria)

Philosopher and early Zionist leader. Although Birnbaum left orthodoxy at a young age, his direction moved into Jewish Nationalism rather than assimilation. He formed Kadimah, a nationalist students organization in 1882 and became one of Herzl's strong supporters. Three years later, he founded and edited the first Jewish nationalist journal in German, Selbstemanzipation, where the term Zionism was first used in a modern sense. He left active Zionist affairs in 1903 over a disagreement on the negation of the Diaspora, and advocated Diaspora nationalism and Yiddish along with Zionism. In the aftermath of WWI he became active in religious organizations becoming the general secretary of Agudat Israel (1919). He wrote numerous articles delineating his religious philosophy of trying to "create the new Jew, based in the Torah, near to nature and to God".




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