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Chosen Capital The Jewish Encounter with American Capitalism

ISBN-10: 0813553083
ISBN-13: 9780813553085
Edition: 2012
List price: $29.95 Buy it from $21.22
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Description: At what moments and in what ways did Jews play a central role in American capitalism? Perhaps fears of this question’s anti-Semitic overtones have discouraged scholars from pondering this query even though many are quick to comment upon the speed  More...

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Book details

List price: $29.95
Copyright year: 2012
Publisher: Rutgers University Press
Publication date: 8/20/2012
Binding: Paperback
Pages: 288
Size: 6.00" wide x 9.00" long x 1.00" tall
Weight: 0.990
Language: English

At what moments and in what ways did Jews play a central role in American capitalism? Perhaps fears of this question’s anti-Semitic overtones have discouraged scholars from pondering this query even though many are quick to comment upon the speed with which Jews moved up America’s class ladder.Chosen Capitaladdresses this question head-on by exploring Jews’ impact on American capitalism as both its architects—through their participation in specific industries—and as its most vocal critics through their support of unionism and radical political movements. Chosen Capitalis far from another celebratory work on great businessmen of the American Jewish past. Rather, by focusing on the era when American capitalism was redefined by industrialization, war, migration, and the emergence of the United States as a superpower, this collection illustrates how Jews living in small towns scattered throughout the South and West along with Jews living in major metropolitan areas shaped andwere shapedby the development of America’s particular system of capitalism. Contributors examine such diverse topics as Jews in real estate, the liquor industry, and the scrap metal industry; the introduction and selling of Jewish ritual objects and such foods as matzah as commodities; and the part Jews played in developing radical labor agendas (e.g., the American Labor Party and the International Ladies’ Garment Workers’ Union). These essays force us to rethink not only the central role Jews played in American economic development but also how capitalism has shaped Jewish life over the course of the twentieth century. Contributors:Marni Davis, Georgia State UniversityPhyllis Dillon, independent documentary producer, textile conservator, museum curatorAndrew Dolkart, Columbia UniversityAndrew Godley, Henley Business School, University of ReadingJonathan Karp, executive director, American Jewish Historical SocietyDaniel Katz, Empire State College, State University of New YorkIra Katznelson, Columbia UniversityDavid S. Koffman, New York UniversityEli Lederhendler, Hebrew University, JerusalemJonathan Z. S. Pollack, University of Wisconsin—MadisonJonathan D. Sarma, Brandeis UniversityJeffrey Shandler, Rutgers UniversityDaniel Soyer, Fordham University

Marni Davis is Assistant Professor of History at Georgia State University.

Andrew S. Dolkart teaches at the Columbia University School of Architecture and has written and lectured extensively about New York's architecture and development. He is the author of the Guide to New York City Landmarks,has curated numerous exhibitions, and is well-known for his walking tours of New York City neighborhoods.

Acknowledgments
Note on Orthography and Transliteration
Reframing the Jewish Encounter with American Capitalism
Introduction. The Chosen People in the Chosen Land: The Jewish Encounter with American Capitalism
Two Exceptionalisms: Points of Departure for Studies of Capitalism and Jews in the United States
Jewish Niches in the American Economy
The Evolution of the Jewish Garment Industry, 1840-1940
From the Rag Trade to Riches: Abraham E. Lefcourt and the Development of New York's Garment District
Success from Scrap and Secondhand Goods: Jewish Businessmen in the Midwest, 1890-1930
Despised Merchandise: American Jewish Liquor Entrepreneurs and Their Critics
Blacks, Jews, and the Business of Race Music, 1945-1955
Jews, American Indian Curios, and the Westward Expansion of Capitalism
Jews and the Politics of American Capitalism
The Multicultural Front: A Yiddish Socialist Response to Sweatshop Capitalism
Making Peace with Capitalism? Jewish Socialism Enters the Mainstream, 1933-1944
A Jewish "Third Way" to American Capitalism: Isaac Rivkind and the Conservative-Communitarian Ideal
Selling Judaism: Capitalism and Reshaping of Jewish Religious Culture
Sanctification of the Brand Name: The Marketing of Cantor Yossele Rosenblatt
How Matzah Became Square: Manischewitz and the Development of Machine-Made Matzah in the United States
Contributors
Index

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