Yuri Slezkine

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<!-- Unsourced image removed: -->Yuri Slezkine (Russian: Юрий Слезкин) (b. 1956) is a professor of Russian history and Director of the Institute of Slavic, East European, and Eurasian Studies at the University of California, Berkeley. He is best known as the author of the highly acclaimed book The Jewish Century (2004). Slezkine holds a PhD from the University of Texas, Austin.

He originally trained as an interpreter in Moscow State University. His first trip outside the Soviet Union was in the late 1970s when he found work as a translator in Mozambique. He returned to Moscow to serve as a translator of Portuguese, and spent 1982 in Lisbon before emigrating to Austin, Texas the next year.

He is currently a W. Glenn Campbell and Rita Ricardo-Campbell National Fellow at Stanford University's Hoover Institution.

Slezkine's theory of ethnic identity

Slezkine characterizes the Jews (alongside such groups as the Armenians, overseas Chinese, and Gypsies) as a Mercurian people "specializ exclusively in providing services to the surrounding food-producing societies," which he characterizes as Apollonian. With the exception of the Gypsies, these "Mercurian peoples" have all enjoyed great economic success relative to the average among their hosts, and have all, without exception, attracted hostility and resentment. Slezkine develops this thesis by arguing that the Jews, the most successful of these Mercurian peoples, have increasingly...
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