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Sociology and other topics
(click on a listing for more information or to purchase it)

[book] The Politics of Inclusion and Exclusion : Jews and Nationalism in Hungary by Vera Ranki
Hardcover (May 1999) Holmes and Meier. A treatment of anti-semitism and racism as political, social and moral issues.
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[book] The Masada Myth : Collective Memory and Mythmaking in Israel by Nachman Ben-Yehuda
Hardcover - 384 pages (December 8, 1995) Univ of Wisconsin Press. In 73 A.D., legend has it, 960 Jewish rebels under siege in the ancient desert fortress of Masada committed suicide rather than surrender to a Roman legion. Israeli sociologist Nachman Ben-Yehuda (Hebrew University) looks at how this long-forgotten and unsubstantiated story affects Israel
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[book] The Luckiest Orphans : A History of the Hebrew Orphan Asylum of New York by Hyman Bogen
Hardcover - 283 pages (August 1992) Univ of Illinois Press.
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[book] Marketing Identities : The Invention of Jewish Ethnicity in Ost Und West by David A. Brenner
Paperback - 252 pages (October 1998) Wayne State Univ Press. Ost und West was a German-Jewish magazine of the early 20th Century. Brenner uses the magazine to analyze the creation of Jewish identity in Germany.
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[book] How Jews Became White Folks and What That Says About Race in America by Karen Brodkin
Paperback - 272 pages (February 1999) Rutgers Univ Press. After the 19050's and Gentleman's Agreement, Jews were better able to assimilate into American culture, and began to view themselves as part of American mainstream, Anglo-Norman white culture. This is a Marxist-like analysis of the process Jews went through to become part of the mainstream. Click to read more.
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[book] Rituals of Childhood : Jewish Acculturation in Medieval Europe by Ivan G. Marcus
Paperback - 208 pages (December 1998) Yale University Press. In medieval times, when a Jewish boy of five began religious schooling, he was carried from home to a teacher and placed on the teacher's lap. He was then asked to recite and lick the honey-coated Hebrew alphabet, to eat inscribed hard boiled eggs and cakes and raisins, and to recite an incantation forgetfulness. Like a rushnig river's waters, his studies of Torah should have no end. This book - Ivan Marcus's erudite and novel interpretation of this rite of passage - presents a new anthropological historical approach to Jewish culture and acculturation in medieval Christian Europe. Click to read more.
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[book] Education in Ancient Israel : Across the Deadening Silence (Anchor Bible Reference Library) by James L. Crenshaw
Hardcover - 320 pages (1998). Distinguished biblical scholar James L. Crenshaw investigates both the pragmatic hows and the philosophical whys of education in ancient Israel and its surroundings. Asking questions as basic as "Who were the teachers and students and from what segment of Israelite society did they come?" and "How did instructors interest young people in the things they had to say?" Crenshaw explores the institutions and practices of education in ancient Israel. The results are often surprising and more complicated than one would expect. Click to read more.
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[book] Bridge Across Broken Time: Chinese and Jewish Cultural Memory by Vera Schwarcz
Hardcover - 240 pages (May 1998) Yale Univ. Press. No, this is not about the allure of Chinese cuisine in the American Jewish community, or about why so many Jews marry Asians. It is about memory and metaphor. How do Jews and Chinese preserve and transmit their cultures. Should we begin to speak of Judeo-Confucian values rather than Judeo-Christian? What did Chinese culture do without the wrath of the god-inspired prophets? An original, thoughtful, poetic book from Wesleyan Professor of East Asian Studies Vera Schwarcz. In October 1979, Schwarcz, the daughter of Transylvanian Holocaust survivors, was studying in Beijing. It was Yom Kippur. Inside her dorm room, she was fasting and reading Wiesel's Les Chants des Morte." Outside, the authorities were closing the Democracy Wall. She was struck by the way both Jewish and Chinese cultures act to preserve and transmit fragments of cultural memories, in light of the powers that attempt to eradicate them, namely the Shoah and the Cultural Revolution. It was through the study of Asian culture that Vera embarks on a study of her own family's Jewish memories, as well as her parents' pre-War families and marriages. Amnesia is a relief from recollection. But both Jewish (if I forget thee..) and Chinese (If you lose the past, the will easily crumbles) cultures reward people for remembrance. This book enlightened me to the Judeo-Confucian tradition, the rabbi and the scholar, halakha and li, Rabbi Hillel and Confucius' disciple Mencius, the role of the Jewish prophets, and the lack of the socially just god in China with which one could fight imperial power. Did you know that the metaphoric poetry of Yehudah Amichai is used in China to remember Tiananmen Square? How do the concept of gesher (bridge) and kesher (tying knot) in the Midrash and Bratslav-Hasidism compare to qiaoliang (bridge) and ren (endurance) and the writings of Yeng Shen. What can be learned from the midrash on god blessing Adam and Eve with the gift of amnesia and the Chinese tale of Old Lady Meng's Soup, which is a broth of amnesia. I found this book fascinating, and it includes a chapter on the experiences of the Mirrer Yeshiva in Shanghai.
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The Politics and Public Culture of American Jews by Arthur Goren
$40 before discount. July 1999. Indiana University Press. Not out yet. By the author of The Maerican Jews and Dissenter in Zion. Click to read more.


[book] A Time for Planting : The First Migration 1654-1820 (The Jewish People in America, Vol 1) by Eli Faber
Paperback Vol 1 (March 1995) Johns Hopkins Univ Press. Faber recounts these earliest days of Jewish life in America, as Jews from Lisbon to Amsterdam to London extend the wanderings of their centuries-old diaspora -- this time to a distant, but promising, new world. Click to read more.
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[book] A Time for Gathering : The Second Migration 1820-1880 (The Jewish People in America, Vol 2) by Hasia R. Diner
Paperback Vol 2 (April 1995) Johns Hopkins Univ Press. Diner describes this "second wave" of Jewish migration and challenges many long-held assumptions--particularly the belief that the immigrants' Judaism erodes in the middle class comfort of Victorian America. Click to read more.
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[book] A Time for Building : The Third Migration 1880-1920 (The Jewish People in America, Vol 3) by Gerald Sorin, Henry L. Feingold (Editor)
Paperback Vol 3 (March 1995) Johns Hopkins Univ Press. Sorin tells of the experiences of Jews who stay in the large cities of the Northeast and Midwest as well as those who move to smaller towns in the deep South and the West Click to read more.
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[book] A Time for Searching : Entering the Mainstream 1920-1945 (The Jewish People in America, Vol 4) by Henry L. Feingold
Paperback Vol 4 (March 1995) Johns Hopkins Univ Press. Feingold chronicles a turbulent period when Jews are poised to enter the mainstream of American life and explores issues that will preoccupy America's Jewish community for the rest of the century. Click to read more.
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[book] A Time for Healing : American Jewry Since World War II (The Jewish People in America, Vol 5) by Edward S. Shapiro, Henry L. Feingold (Editor)
Paperback Vol 5 (March 1995) Johns Hopkins Univ Press. Many Jews rise to prominence after World War II, but this success comes at a cost. Shapiro takes seriously the potential threat to Jewish culture posed by assimilation and intermarriage and asks if the Jewish people will survive America's freedom and affluence. Click to read more.
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[book] The Jewish People in America by Henry L. Feingold (Editor)
Hardcover boxed set of the books above, 1616 pages for $150.00. Chronicling the history of Jewish people in America from colonial times to the present, this five-volume set includes A Time for Planting, A Time for Gathering, A Time for Building, A Time for Searching, and A Time for Healing. Click to read more.
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[book] The Singular Beast : Jews, Christians, & the Pig (European Perspectives) by Claudine Fabre-Vassas, Carol Volk (Translator)
Hardcover - 448 pages (July 1997) Columbia Univ Press. I was drawn to this book, becuase I loved Dr. Rappaport's famed books titled "Pigs For The Ancestors" about New Guinea tribes. This has nothing to do with that though. The reviewer wrote, The Singular Beast is an academic study of the relationship between pigs and Jews in European Christian culture. It is a challenging book, but it's well worth the trouble for readers who want to understand the shape of traditional Christian anti-Semitism. "We know that the world's cultures readily designate others by what they eat; in Europe we call one another frogs, roast beefs, or macaroni eaters," Claudine Fabre-Vassas writes. "A very rare exception should have aroused suspicion: Jews are called 'pigs,' imagined to be bloodthirsty, identified precisely as what they forbid themselves." When Fabre-Vassas digs into this paradox, she discovers all kinds of interesting and awful myths. Suffice it to say, Christian readers will think twice about putting ham in the oven next Easter. Click to read more.
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[book] Jewish Women in America : An Historical Encyclopedia by E. Paula Hyman (Editor), Deborah Dash Moore (Editor), Paula Hyman (Editor)
Only $250. Library Binding - 1,800 pages (November 1997) Routledge. This work contains more than 800 biographies and 110 topical essays. All are signed, and all have brief bibliographies. Click to learn more.
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[book] Mind and Nature : A Necessary Unity by Gregory. Bateson
Paperback. 1979. Probably out of print. Click to learn more.
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[book] Jewish History and Jewish Memory : Essays in Honor of Yosef Hayim Yerushalmi (Tauber Institute for the Study of European Jewry Series, 29) Edited by Elisheva Carlebach
Hardcover - 512 pages (October 1998). Yerushalmi launched sozens of Jewish scholars on the road to studying collective memory and myth in Jewish history. In this collection, eminent scholars extend the lines of his seminal study into topics that range from medieval rabbinics, homiletics, kabbalah and Hasidism to antisemitism, Zionism, and the making of modern Jewish identity. Click to learn more.
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[book] The Kindness of Strangers : The Abandonment of Children in Western Europe from Late Antiquity to the Renaissance by John Boswell
Paperback - 488 pages (September 1998). Using a wide variety of sources, John Boswell examines the evidence that parents of all classes gave up unwanted children, "exposing" them in public places, donating them to the church, or delivering them in later centuries to foundling hospitals. He shows what happened to these children, and he illuminates the moral codes that condoned abandonment. SO YOU ASK, WHAT DOES THIS HAVE TO DO WITH JEWS? Well in this tasty book, are several sections dealing with Jewish attitudes toward child abandonment and the sale of children, and whether Christian abandonment of children were a root cause in the Pesach blood libels against Jews. Did Jews really eat the flesh of their own children during the medieval famines and wars in Spain? Read the book to find out.
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[book] The Legend of the Wandering Jew by George Kumler Anderson
Paperback Reprint edition (August 1991).
Click here to BUY this book


[book] The War of Atonement by Chaim Herzog and Michael Herzog
($30 before discount) Hardcover - 304 pages (March 1998)
Click here to BUY this book or read reviews

[book] And Prairie Dogs Weren't Kosher: Jewish Women in the Upper Midwest Since 1855 by Linda Mack Schloff
($30 before 30% discount) Hardcover - 244 pages (October 1996) Minnesota Historical Society. Another one of my fun purchases while traveling in the Midwest. Schloff integrates oral accounts, diaries, letters, and autobiographies with original research and interpretation to shed vital new light on the Jewish experience in America's heartland
Click here to BUY this for a 30% discount
Click here to BUY the PAPERBACK edition for 20% a 20% discount

[book] Growing Up Jewish in America: An Oral History by Myrna Katz Frommer, Harvey Frommer
($25 before discount) Hardcover - 264 pages (November 1995) Harcourt Brace. Childhood memories of 100 men and women, ranging in ages from 22 to 99, combine to create a unique portrait of Jewish-American life in the 20th century
Click here to BUY this book for 30% OFF its list price or to read more reviews.

[book] A Treasury of American-Jewish Folklore by Steve Koppman and Lion Koppman
30% off. Hardcover (March 1997) Jason Aronson Inc
Click here to BUY this book for 30% OFF its list price or to read more reviews.

[book] It Happened in Brooklyn : An Oral History of Growing Up in the Borough in the 1940S, 1950S, and 1960s by Myrna Katz Frommer, Harvey Frommer
($15 before discount) Paperback (November 1995)
Click here to BUY this book for 20% OFF its list price or to read more reviews.

[book] It Happened in the Catskills : An Oral History in the Words of Busboys, Bellhops, Guests, Proprietors, Comedians, Agents, and Others Who Lived It) by Myrna Katz Frommer, Harvey Frommer
($16 before discount) Paperback (October 1996) Brings back the atmosphere of the Catskills at the height of the Borscht Belt. As in, "the food is awful, and they give you such small portions."
Click here to BUY this book for 20% OFF its list price or to read more reviews.

[book] To the Golden Cities : Pursuing the American Jewish Dream in Miami and L.A by Deborah Dash Moore
Paperback Reprint edition (March 1996) Harvard Univ Press. Looks at the migration of post-World War II Jews to Miami and Los Angeles and examines the new economic niches they carved out and the cultural institutions they created there. Click below to read a larger review.
Click here to BUY this book for 20% OFF its list price or to read more reviews.

[book] The War of Atonement by Chaim Herzog and Michael Herzog
($30 before discount) Hardcover - 304 pages (March 1998)
Click here to BUY this book or read reviews

[book] Between Dignity and Despair: Jewish Life in Nazi Germany (Studies in Jewish History)by Marion A. Kaplan
($30 before discount) Hardcover - 288 pages (May 1998) Oxford Univ Press. According to The Times, "This is a devastatingly powerful book. By vividly illustrating how the Holocaust began with seemingly inconsequential acts of humiliation, Kaplan offers readers a message of contemporary relevance. Simply put, genocidal violence can have its genesis in the smallest expression of prejudice and hatred.
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