Open Books in Jewish Studies
Many, but not all, of these books are true OER, meaning they can be adapted by the user. Those that are available freely, but not adaptable, are noted. Please contact a librarian if you are unsure what you may do with a resource.
Ambiguous Relations: The American Jewish Community and Germany Since 1945
From the site: The reemergence of a united Germany as a dominant power in Europe has increased even more it's importance as a major political ally and trade partner of the United States, despite the misgivings of some U.S. citizens. Ambiguous Relations addresses for the first time the complex relationships between American Jews and Germany over the fifty years following the end of World War II, and examines American Jewry's' ambiguous attitude toward Germany that continues despite sociological and generational changes within the community.
American Jewry and the Holocaust: The American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee, 1939-1945
From the site: In this volume Yehudi Bauer describes the efforts made to aid European victims of World War II by the New York-based American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee, American Jewry's chief representative abroad. Drawing on the mass of unpublished material in the JDC archives and other repositories, as well as on his thorough knowledge of recent and continuing research into the Holocaust, he focuses alternately on the personalities and institutional decisions in New York and their effects on the JDC workers and their rescue efforts in Europe.
Witness Through the Imagination: Jewish American Holocaust Literature
Criticism of Holocaust literature is an emerging field of inquiry, and as might be expected, the most innovative work has been concentrated on the vanguard of European and Israeli Holocaust literature. Now that American fiction has amassed an impressive and provocative Holocaust canon, the time is propitious for its evaluation. Witness Through the Imagination presents a critical reading of themes and stylistic strategies of major American Holocaust fiction to determine its capacity to render the prelude, progress, and aftermath of the Holocaust. The unifying critical approach is the textual explication of themes and literary method, occasional comparative references to international Holocaust literature, and a discussion of extra-literary Holocaust sources that have influenced the creative writers' treatment of the Holocaust universe.
Germany on their Minds: German Jewish Refugees in the United States and their Relationships with Germany, 1938-1988
From the site: Throughout the 1930s and early 1940s, before closing its borders to Jewish refugees, the United States granted asylum to approximately 90,000 German Jews fleeing the horrors of the Third Reich. And while most became active participants in American society, they also often constructed their individual and communal lives and identities in relation to their home country.
The Jewish Unions in America: Pages of History and Memories
From the site: Newly arrived in New York in 1882 from Tsarist Russia, the sixteen-year-old Bernard Weinstein discovered an America in which unionism, socialism, and anarchism were very much in the air. He found a home in the tenements of New York and for the next fifty years he devoted his life to the struggles of fellow Jewish workers. The Jewish Unions in America blends memoir and history to chronicle this time. It describes how Weinstein led countless strikes, held the unions together in the face of retaliation from the bosses, investigated sweatshops and factories with the aid of reformers, and faced down schisms by various factions, including Anarchists and Communists.
No Haven for the Oppressed: United States Policy Toward Jewish Refugees, 1938-1945
From the site: No Haven for the Oppressed is the most thorough and the most comprehensive analysis to be written to date on the United States policy toward Jewish refugees during World War II. Friedman draws upon many sources for his history, significantly upon papers which have only recently been opened to public scrutiny.
Jewish Immigrant Associations and American Identity in New York, 1880-1939: Jewish Landsmanshaftn in American Culture
From the site: Landsmanshaftn, associations of immigrants from the same hometown, became the most popular form of organization among Eastern European Jewish immigrants to the United States in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Jewish Immigrant Associations and American Identity in New York, 1880-1939, by Daniel Soyer, holds an in-depth discussion on the importance of these hometown societies that provided members with valuable material benefits and served as arenas for formal and informal social interaction.
From New Zion to Old Zion: American Jewish Immigration and Settlement in Palestine, 1917-1939
From the site: American Aliyah (immigration to Palestine) began in the mid-nineteenth century fueled by the desire of American Jews to study Torah and by their wish to live and be buried in the Holy Land. His movement of people-men and women-increased between World War I and II, in direct contrast to European Jewry's desire to immigrate to the United States. Why would American Jews want to leave America, and what characterized their resettlement?