Jewish Times: Voices of the American Jewish Experience

Howard Simons, Author Houghton Mifflin Harcourt (HMH) $0 (418p) ISBN 978-0-395-44680-5
``My father taught me how to make bagels,'' recalls a junior high school principal. ``This was the big production that I had been waiting for my whole life. I was already an adult.'' His reminiscences, along with those of 226 others interviewed, infuse this kaleidoscopic oral history with Jewish humor and yeasty realism. Toting his tape recorder from Alaska to Florida, Simons, curator of Harvard's Neiman Foundation for Journalism, approached American Jews from all walks of life for their stories. They candidly discuss the traumas of immigration, shtetl networking kept alive in U.S. towns and cities, their experiences in politics, mixed marriage, anti-Semitism. We read their remembrances of Jewish street-gang turf wars on the Lower East Side, the Jewish presence in the old Wild West and Jews' contributions to the labor movement. Luminaries interviewed include Arthur Goldberg, Daniel Bell, Fred Schwartz (``Fred the Furrier'') and radio host Larry King. (October)
Reviewed on: 01/01/1988
Release date: 01/01/1988
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