The first Episode is called, "The Dawn of the Century" and covers 1900 - 1910.
This episode introduces the uniqueness of Jewish history in the 20th century within the
context of world history. At the turn of the 20th century, Jews were scattered across the
globe, representing only ¼ of one percent of the worlds population. It was a time of
empires, imperial rule and colonial expansionism. In Russia the masses, including the
Jews, lived in dire poverty which was compounded by grassroots antisemitism. In 1905
the Russian masses revolted and there was a general strike. On Bloody Sunday the
Czar responded with force. The Czar did not abdicate until 1917, which is typically the
date given for the second Russian Revolution, which, in turn, led to increased pogroms
against the Jews. The pogroms and the economic conditions forced approximately
40% of Jewish population to leave the Russian Empire and go to Western countries
including the United States and to Palestine and other countries as far away as South
Africa and Australia.
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