New Book Provides Historical Perspective On Jewish Culture In New York City

Jewish New York. Cover photo courtesy of: NYU Press
Jewish New York. Cover photo courtesy of: NYU Press

Jewish immigrants transformed New York. They built its clothing industry, expanded its commercial reach, and constructed huge swaths of apartment buildings. New York Jews helped to make the city the center of the nation’s publishing industry, also shaping commercial entertainment and contributing mightily to urban musical cultures. New York Jews have influenced both the city and the nation. Deborah Dash Moore along with Jeffrey S. Gurock, Annie Polland, Howard B. Rock, and Daniel Soyer give readers a closer look at their story in their book, Jewish New York.

Jewish New York reveals the multifaceted world of one of the city’s most important religious and ethnic groups: New York Jews. Spanning three centuries, the volume traces the earliest arrivals of Jews in New Amsterdam through to the recent immigration of Jews from the former Soviet Union, charting the growing impact of Jews on New York City’s economy, politics, and culture.

Deborah Dash Moore.  Photo credit:  Jean-Paul Jann
Deborah Dash Moore. Photo credit: Jean-Paul Jann

This incredible story, known only in fragments, now appears in a single volume. Jewish New York demonstrates how New York nourished an extraordinary diversity of Jews, from the most pious to the aggressively secular. The book also highlights a history of New York Jews that is far from celebratory. Struggles with poverty, desertion, and anti-Semitism color their story. Epic conflicts tore apart the fragile fabric of community. Still, despite these struggles, many remained committed to remaking New York into a model multiethnic, multiracial, and multi-religious world city.

A lively and visually rich volume, Jewish New York explores the history of Jewish New Yorkers and their role in transforming New York into the distinctive global city it is today. 



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