The multi-disciplinary nature of the essays represents a new path in Jewish studies, one that deals with both the physical and spiritual aspects of growth and the cultural and intellectual sides of the Jewish experience. While its reach is global and its themes are scholarly, it is easily accessible to a wide readership because of the clear writing, richly wrought imagery and logically developed ideas. For example, Veronica Belling’s piece on women’s journeys from Eastern Europe to South Africa explains how that nation’s Jewish identity and quality of life was shaped by two waves of immigration, before World War I and immediately after. Tony Kushner studies the Jewish family, with an emphasis on the role of the husband and father, and contrasts the elite Jews who boarded the ill-fated Titanic with the obscure Jewish immigrants who were their poorer cousins. The book is the newest entry in the Parkes-Wiener Series on Jewish Studies series, whose aim is to publish new research and reissue classic studies in the field. Abstracts, index, notes on contributors.
Linda F. Burghardt is a New York-based journalist and author who has contributed commentary, breaking news, and features to major newspapers across the U.S., in addition to having three non-fiction books published. She writes frequently on Jewish topics and is now serving as Scholar-in-Residence at the Holocaust Memorial & Tolerance Center of Nassau County.