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The Jews of the United States, 1654 to 2000 [electronic resource] /
Hasia R. Diner.
imprint
Berkeley : University of California Press, c2004.
description
x, 437 p. : ill.
ISBN
0520227735 (cloth : alk. paper)
format(s)
Book
More Details
added author
imprint
Berkeley : University of California Press, c2004.
isbn
0520227735 (cloth : alk. paper)
restrictions
Licensed for access by U. of T. users.
catalogue key
12344657
 
Includes bibliographical references (p. 395-407) and index.
A Look Inside
Excerpts
Flap Copy
"Hasia Diner's history of American Jewry effortlessly surpasses its predecessors. A work of both synthesis and analysis, it ranges widely, incorporating insights from social, cultural, political, and religious history. Both the specialist and the general reader will profit from its clarity and intelligence. In particular, its novel periodization will spark discussion of conventional ways of thinking about the development of the American Jewish community."--Todd M. Endleman, author ofThe Jews of Britain, 1656 to 2000 "Author of many books on immigration, foodways, and other topics, Hasia Diner now brings us an exceptionally fine, candid, and often surprising one-volume narrative of the entire run of American Jewish history. Meticulously accurate yet smoothly flowing, it will enlighten and delight knowledgeable and new readers alike. A 'must read'-and now the best read-on the subject."--Walter T. Nugent, author ofCrossings: The Great Transatlantic Migrations, 1870-1914 "The Jews of the United States is a masterful and richly textured account of the Jewish experience in this country over 350 years. Diner has produced an important book, at once systematic and synthetic, that attends to the many diverse expressions of Jewish life in America. With grace, clarity, and erudition, she explores the social, religious, and institutional life of Jews in the United States, enlivening her story throughout with intriguing personalities and anecdotes. This is history that engages, informs, and entertains. A milestone in American Jewish historiography!"--David Myers, author ofResisting History: Historicism and Its Discontents in German-Jewish Thought
Flap Copy
"Hasia Diner's history of American Jewry effortlessly surpasses its predecessors. A work of both synthesis and analysis, it ranges widely, incorporating insights from social, cultural, political, and religious history. Both the specialist and the general reader will profit from its clarity and intelligence. In particular, its novel periodization will spark discussion of conventional ways of thinking about the development of the American Jewish community."--Todd M. Endleman, author of The Jews of Britain, 1656 to 2000 "Author of many books on immigration, foodways, and other topics, Hasia Diner now brings us an exceptionally fine, candid, and often surprising one-volume narrative of the entire run of American Jewish history. Meticulously accurate yet smoothly flowing, it will enlighten and delight knowledgeable and new readers alike. A 'must read'-and now the best read-on the subject."--Walter T. Nugent, author of Crossings: The Great Transatlantic Migrations, 1870-1914 "The Jews of the United States is a masterful and richly textured account of the Jewish experience in this country over 350 years. Diner has produced an important book, at once systematic and synthetic, that attends to the many diverse expressions of Jewish life in America. With grace, clarity, and erudition, she explores the social, religious, and institutional life of Jews in the United States, enlivening her story throughout with intriguing personalities and anecdotes. This is history that engages, informs, and entertains. A milestone in American Jewish historiography!"--David Myers, author of Resisting History: Historicism and Its Discontents in German-Jewish Thought
Full Text Reviews
Appeared in Choice on 2005-04-01:
The strengths of this history of US Jews are many. The book's lucid prose, analytic sophistication, and commanding synthesis of the most recent scholarship make it the best one-volume introduction to the subject, accessible to laymen and engaging to specialists. Diner (NYU) displays acute understanding of the multilayered forces that need to be considered to explain human behavior and historical patterns. She invokes broad yet detailed historical, social, economic, political, geographic, cultural, technological, and religious factors to explore Jewish reality in the US from its Colonial origins to 2000, all set against the background of a changing US landscape. Diner's most arresting--and most questionable--historiographical decision is to frame the central portion of her story within what she calls the "the pivotal century." This works well for her discussion of Jewish immigration but not as well for her depiction of Jewish social life, which tends to bleach differences and divergences in favor of sameness. The concluding chapter, "In Search of Continuity, 1967-2000," is workmanlike, thematically episodic, and bland, and does not adequately convey the pulsating paradoxes, contradictions, and stresses of contemporary US Jewish life. These quibbles aside, this thoughtful book represents a superb achievement. ^BSumming Up: Essential. All levels/libraries. B. Kraut CUNY Queens College
Appeared in Library Journal on 2004-08-01:
Diner (American Jewish history, NYU) has authored many works on Jewish history, including a key volume in the acclaimed "The Jewish People in America" series, titled A Time for Gathering: The Second Migration, 1820-1880. Here she offers a solid history of Jews in America that makes use of the latest research in this growing field. Her study works best as an interpretive overview. Diner is especially adept at showing how Jewish communal organizations have played an instrumental role in maintaining the well-being of Jews in America, observing, for instance, that the Jewish student organization Hillel "essentially served as a buffer against the hostile world that Jewish students inhabited." At times compulsively readable (with long chapters and topic headings), this is a good introduction that public libraries serving a Jewish patron base will want to own; readers looking for a longer and more detailed work might want to consult Howard Sachar's A History of the Jews in America. Paul Kaplan, Lake Villa Dist. Lib., IL (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
Appeared in Publishers Weekly on 2004-06-28:
In the fourth volume in the Jewish Communities in the Modern World series, Diner (an NYU professor and author of Hungering for America) shows that, from the colonial era to the present, Jews have wanted both to "be good Jews and... full Americans." The book opens with a survey of the small Jewish community in colonial and revolutionary America. Diner then turns to the 19th-century waves of Jewish immigration. In these pages, we meet upwardly mobile peddlers, religious reformers pressing for English-language worship services and Jewish state senators. In the final section of the book, Diner charts Jewish responses to World War I, the Holocaust and the Civil Rights movement. Diner is to be commended for her thorough integration of women into her Jewish American story; she recounts the stories of female philanthropists and teachers, and examines the roles women played in political movements from Zionism to second-wave feminism. She also deserves kudos for attending to both religious and secular Judaism. She traces the 18th- and 19th-century battles for religious reform, the impact of Orthodox Jewish immigration on the American Jewish landscape and so forth, but she does not reduce the history of Judaism in America to a strictly religious story, or neglect political and cultural expressions of Judaism, like Yiddish theater. This academic synthesis of Jewish American history will find a home in the university market and will have crossover appeal to a broader readership. (Aug.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved
Reviews
Review Quotes
"Informative, engaging, and well-researched."
"Informative, engaging, and well-researched."-- Western States Jewish History
This item was reviewed in:
Publishers Weekly, June 2004
Library Journal, August 2004
Choice, April 2005
To find out how to look for other reviews, please see our guides to finding book reviews in the Sciences or Social Sciences and Humanities.
Summaries
Bowker Data Service Summary
Diner portrays the history of Jews in the United States as a constant process of negotiation, undertaken by ordinary people who wished to be both Jews & full Americans. Her work documents the major developments of American Judaism from the first landing in 1654 to the present day.
Long Description
Since Peter Stuyvesant greeted with enmity the first group of Jews to arrive on the docks of New Amsterdam in 1654, Jews have entwined their fate and fortunes with that of the United States--a project marked by great struggle and great promise. What this interconnected destiny has meant for American Jews and how it has defined their experience among the world's Jews is fully chronicled in this work, a comprehensive and finely nuanced history of Jews in the United States from 1654 through the end of the past century. Hasia R. Diner traces Jewish participation in American history--from the communities that sent formal letters of greeting to George Washington; to the three thousand Jewish men who fought for the Confederacy and the ten thousand who fought in the Union army; to the Jewish activists who devoted themselves to the labor movement and the civil rights movement. Diner portrays this history as a constant process of negotiation, undertaken by ordinary Jews who wanted at one and the same time to be Jews and full Americans. Accordingly, Diner draws on both American and Jewish sources to explain the chronology of American Jewish history, the structure of its communal institutions, and the inner dynamism that propelled it. Her work documents the major developments of American Judaism--he economic, social, cultural, and political activities of the Jews who immigrated to and settled in America, as well as their descendants--and shows how these grew out of both a Jewish and an American context. She also demonstrates how the equally compelling urges to maintain Jewishness and to assimilate gave American Jewry the particular character that it retains to this day in all its subtlety and complexity.
Main Description
Since Peter Stuyvesant greeted with enmity the first group of Jews to arrive on the docks of New Amsterdam in 1654, Jews have entwined their fate and fortunes with that of the United States-a project marked by great struggle and great promise. What this interconnected destiny has meant for American Jews and how it has defined their experience among the worlds Jews is fully chronicled in this work, a comprehensive and finely nuanced history of Jews in the United States from 1654 through the end of the past century. Hasia R. Diner traces Jewish participation in American history-from the communities that sent formal letters of greeting to George Washington; to the three thousand Jewish men who fought for the Confederacy and the ten thousand who fought in the Union army; to the Jewish activists who devoted themselves to the labor movement and the civil rights movement. Diner portrays this history as a constant process of negotiation, undertaken by ordinary Jews who wanted at one and the same time to be Jews and full Americans. Accordingly, Diner draws on both American and Jewish sources to explain the chronology of American Jewish history, the structure of its communal institutions, and the inner dynamism that propelled it. Her work documents the major developments of American Judaism-he economic, social, cultural, and political activities of the Jews who immigrated to and settled in America, as well as their descendants-and shows how these grew out of both a Jewish and an American context. She also demonstrates how the equally compelling urges to maintain Jewishness and to assimilate gave American Jewry the particular character that it retains to this day in all its subtlety and complexity.
Unpaid Annotation
A history of Jews in American that is informed by the constant process of negotiation undertaken by ordinary Jews in their communities who wanted at one and the same time to be good Jews and full Americans.
Table of Contents
The earliest Jewish communities
American Jewish origins : 1654-1776p. 13
Becoming American : 1776-1820p. 41
The pivotal century
A century of migration : 1820-1924p. 71
A century of Jewish life in America : 1820-1924p. 112
A century of Jewish politics : 1820-1920p. 155
Twentieth-century journeys
At home and beyond : 1924-1948p. 205
A golden age? : 1948-1967p. 259
In search of continuity : 1967-2000p. 305
Table of Contents provided by Blackwell. All Rights Reserved.

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