Moisis Caimis, a Zionist pioneer and community leader hailing from Corfu, contributed through his journalistic activities to the making of Greek Jewry. Initially working as correspondent of the Trieste-based Italian-Jewish newspaper Il Corriere Israelitico (1885-1898), Caimis published his own Greek language periodicals for the Jews of Greece—Israilitis Chronografos (Corfu, 1899-1901) and Israilitiki Epitheorisis (Athens, 1912-1916). By focusing on the life and work of Moisis Caimis, who was raised in the bilingual Greco-Italian environment of Corfu before moving to Athens in the early twentieth century, this article provides a novel supra-local perspective to the study of Greek Jewry, which emphasizes the importance of Jewish publishing on the Ionian islands for the formation of Jewish identity in Greece. A historical analysis of Caimis’ texts shows how local concepts of patriotism evolved from the late nineteenth to the early twentieth century and how the author gradually created a narrative of Greco-Jewish cultural synergy.

issue 20 / December 2021 by Joana Bürger