An informative jaunt through the religious experience, ceremony, and tradition of the esoteric Hasidic communities of the world.
Jewish Book WorldA personal odyssey led the author to various Hasidic communities in order to understand what ideology is making these groups successfully withstand the forces of the larger society. From Williamsburg, Brooklyn, St. Paul, Minnesota, to Antwerp, Belgium to the Ukraine, Eisenberg singled out individuals and spoke to them in Yiddish. He was able to gather some unique material and allows the reader a more intimate view of their society.
Aaron CohenAn astonishing but quite probable prediction is that by 2075 just about all the remaining American Jews will be orthodox or Hasidim. Although that projection depends heavily on intermarriage and low birthrate among the general U.S. Jewish population, it indicates the tenacity of the Hasidic sect. Eisenberg's study of the Hasidim took him from Brooklyn to Israel and included such remote outposts as Postville, Iowa, and Uman, Ukraine. Even more remarkable than his encountering Hasidic communities in such distant places is how openly their insular members responded to his inquiries. The result of his travels is a rich chronicle of survival through and revival since the Holocaust as well as of constant resistance to assimilation. Eisenberg clears up many misconceptions about Hasidic belief, such as the mistaken notion that all Hasidim are anti-Zionist, and although clearly respectful of Hasidic religious viewpoints, he writes so lightheartedly that, while it is hard to believe a fine book on Talmudic scholars could be so much fun, fun it is.
- HarperCollins Publishers
- Publication date:
- Product dimensions:
- 5.72(w) x 8.45(h) x 0.92(d)
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