Pub. Date:
Cambridge University Press
The American Synagogue: A Sanctuary Transformed

The American Synagogue: A Sanctuary Transformed

by Jack Wertheimer
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Wertheimer's is the first study to chart the course of American synagogue history from colonial times to the present. Fourteen commissioned essays written by prominent scholars of Jewish American history offer a penetrating examination of synagogue development. Through case studies of individual congregations across the country, the authors investigate a wide range of isssues, posing such questions as: What roles have been assigned to the synagogue in various eras in American history? How have the synagogues of the three major denominations--Orthodox, Conservative, and Reform--differed? How have immigrant congregations become Americanized? And by what processes have innovations in synagogue ritual been introduced? The resulting analyses illustrate the richness and diversity of the American synagogue and provide a valuable framework for further study of the significance of the congregation in American religious life.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780521534543
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Publication date: 02/13/2003
Series: Sanctuary Transformed
Edition description: Revised ed.
Pages: 433
Product dimensions: 5.98(w) x 8.98(h) x 1.02(d)

About the Author

JACK WERTHEIMER is the Provost at the Jewish Theological Seminary, New York, and author of several books about American Judaism, including two published by Brandeis University Press, The American Synagogue: A Sanctuary Transformed (1995) and A People Divided: Judaism in Contemporary America (1999).

Table of Contents

Preface; Acknowledgments; 1. Overview: the synagogue in America - a historical typology Abraham J. Karp; Part I. The Denominational Perspective: 2. The orthodox synagogue Jeffrey S. Gurock; 3. The reform synagogue Leon A. Jick; 4. The conservative synagogue Jack Wertheimer; Part II. The American experience of a sephardic synagogue Marc D. Angel; 6. Education in the synagogue: the transformation of the supplementary school Barry Chazan; 7. From city to suburb: temple Mishkan Tefila of Boston Paula E. Hyman; 8. The special sphere of the Middle-Class American Jewish woman: the synagogue sisterhood, 1890-1940 Jenna Weissman Joselit; 9. Ethnic-religious ambiguities in an immigrant synagogue: the case of new hope congregation Benny Kraut; 10. Conflict over reforms: the case of congregation Beth Elohim, Charleston, South Carolina Robert Liberles; 11. A synagogue center grows in Brooklyn Deborah Dash Moore; 12. choosing a synagogue: the social composition of two German congregations in nineteenth-century Baltimore Marsha L. Rozenblit; 13. The debate over mixed seating in the American synagogue Jonathan D. Sarna; 14. Music in the American synagogue: a case study from Houston Kay Kaufman Shelemay; Index.

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