A N Poliak

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Abraham N Poliak (1910-?), born in Kiev, migrated with his family to Palestine in 1923. He occupied the Chair of Mediaeval Jewish History at Tel Aviv University, where he was Head of the Department of Middle Eastern and African Studies. He was the author of numerous books in Hebrew, among them a History of the Arabs; Feudalism in Egypt 1250-1900; Geopolitics of Israel and the Middle East, etc. His essay on "The Khazar Conversion to Judaism" appeared in 1941 in the Hebrew periodical Zion and led to lively controversies; his book Khazaria even more so. It was published in 1944 in Tel Aviv (in Hebrew) and was received with - perhaps understandable - hostility, as an attempt to undermine the sacred tradition concerning the descent of modern Jewry from the Biblical Tribe. His theory is not mentioned in the Encyclopaedia Judaica 1971-2 printing.

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