Following is a selection of books in the Foothill Library on Jewish history and Judaism. To find more books on these subjects, try subject searches using the following terms:
Judaism Judaism, History
Jews, History Israel, History
Basic Beliefs of Judaism by Lawrence J. EpsteinOne of the oldest monotheistic religions known to humankind, Judaism has withstood the tests of time. So what exactly are the tenets of this ancient faith that have been passed down over the millennia, and how do they apply to our lives in the 21st century? This book gives an updated overview of the belief system on which the Jewish faith is based. Epstein takes a contemporary point of view, looking at how the basic beliefs of Judaism fit into the lives of modern Jews.
Amnesia Findings by Anna JacobsonNow I knit myself back into a human. It's hard work relearning the steps - slip-stitch, drop-stitch, pick-up stitch, loop. I get into a rhythm. The pattern is complex - I drop a few stitches. The holes form gaps in my memory. Knitting visions and memories, Anna Jacobson's collection traces the skeins of lost histories and the spaces of dropped stitches. Exquisite and whimsical, these poems bear witness to the broken and healed. Gentle but robust, these are poems of personal resilience, framed by explorations of Jewish culture and family and fuelled by a boundless and exhilarating imaginativeness.
Publication Date: 2019
Confessions of a Yiddish Writer and Other Essays by Chava Rosenfarb; Goldie Morgentaler (Editor)Chava Rosenfarb (1923-2011) was one of the most prominent Yiddish novelists of the second half of the twentieth century. Born in Poland in 1923, she survived the Lodz ghetto, Auschwitz, and Bergen-Belsen, immigrating to Canada in 1950 and settling in Montreal. There she wrote novels, poetry, short stories, plays, and essays, including The Tree of Life: A Trilogy of Life in the Lodz Ghetto, a seminal novel on the Holocaust. Confessions of a Yiddish Writer and Other Essays comprises thirteen personal and literary essays by Rosenfarb, ranging from autobiographical accounts of her childhood and experiences before and during the Holocaust to literary criticism that discusses the work of other Jewish writers. The collection also includes two travelogues, which recount a trip to Australia and another to Prague in 1993, the year it became the capital of the Czech Republic. While several of these essays appeared in the prestigious Yiddish literary journal Di goldene keyt, most were never translated. This book marks the first time that Rosenfarb's non-fiction writings have been presented together in English. A compilation of the memoir and diary excerpts that formed the basis of Rosenfarb's widely acclaimed fiction, Confessions of a Yiddish Writer and Other Essays deepens the reader's understanding of an incredible Yiddish woman and her experiences as a survivor in the post-Holocaust world.
Publication Date: 2019
From Qumran to the Synagogues by Géza G. Xeravits; Ádám Vér (Contribution by)This volume collects papers written during the past two decades that explore various aspects of late Second Temple period Jewish literature and the figurative art of the Late Antique synagogues. Most of the papers have a special emphasis on the reinterpretation of biblical figures in early Judaism or demonstrate how various biblical traditions converged into early Jewish theologies. The structure of the volume reflects the main directions of the author's scholarly interest, examining the Dead Sea Scrolls, the Apocrypha and Pseudepigrapha, and Late Antique synagogues. The book is edited for the interest of scholars of Second Temple Judaism, biblical interpretation, synagogue studies and the effective history of Scripture.
Publication Date: 2019
Leonard Bernstein and the Language of Jazz by Katherine BaberLeonard Bernstein's gifts for drama and connecting with popular audiences made him a central figure in twentieth century American music. Though a Bernstein work might reference anything from modernism to cartoon ditties, jazz permeated every part of his musical identity as a performer, educator, and intellectual. Katherine Baber investigates how jazz in its many styles served Bernstein as a flexible, indeed protean, musical idea. As she shows, Bernstein used jazz to signify American identity with all its tensions and contradictions and to articulate community and conflict, irony and parody, and timely issues of race and gender. Baber provides a thoughtful look at how Bernstein's use of jazz grew out of his belief in the primacy of tonality, music's value as a unique form of human communication, and the formation of national identity in music. She also offers in-depth analyses of On the Town, West Side Story, 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, and other works to explore fascinating links between Bernstein's art and issues like eclecticism, music's relationship to social engagement, black-Jewish relations, and his own musical identity.
Jewish Identity and Civil Rights in America by Kenneth L. MarcusGiven jurisdiction over race and national origin but not religion, federal agents have had to determine whether Jewish Americans constitute a race or national origin group. They have been unable to do so. This has led to enforcement paralysis, as well as explosive internal confrontations and recriminations within the federal government. This book examines the legal and policy issues behind the ambiguity involved with civil rights protections for Jewish students. Written by a former senior government official, this book reveals the extent of this problem and presents a workable legal solution.