Modern American Jewish History

What characterizes the modern American Jewish experience? Is it the effort to assimilate into the American mainstream? Is it about the struggle to preserve Jewish distinctiveness? Drawing on historical scholarship and primary sources (films, art, cartoons, newspapers, literature), we will consider the many meanings of American Jewish identity, particularly its religious, racial, ethnic, and national connotations. We will begin in the 1880s, during the largest wave of Jewish immigration to the U.S. Topics will include “Americanization,” labor, political activism, religious reform, World War II and the Holocaust, “Jewish continuity,” gender roles, race relations, urbanization, suburbanization, and the relationship of Jews to white flight, Zionism, anti-Semitism, and philanthropy. 3 hrs. lect.

11:00am-12:15pm on Tuesday, Thursday (Sep 13, 2021 to Dec 13, 2021)
Gifford LCT