Library JournalCovering a span of time from prehistory through 1991, the data in this compendium are arranged in tabular form under the headings of General History, Jewish History, and Jewish Culture--with later headings dividing Jewish history into geographic areas. The biblical period is covered in fewer than 20 pages, and almost half the book is devoted to the 20th century. There is no articulated criteria for inclusion of material, and the choices in every category seem rather eclectic. Also, there is no clear demarcation among the categories, so that, for instance, obscure literary publications are frequently cited in the history columns. It is hard to tell what use can be made of this compilation other than as a resource for playing Jewish trivia.-- Carol R. Glatt, VA Medical Ctr. Lib., Philadelphia
Zom ZomsThis latest addition to the Timetables series from Simon & Schuster covers Jewish history from the dawn of time through December 1991. For the years 9000 B.C. to A.D. 500, pages have three columns labeled "General History," "Jewish History," and "Jewish Culture." For the years 500 to 1492, there are four columns per page: "Jewish History" is divided into "Europe" and "Middle East/Africa." From 1492 to 1991, "Jewish History" adds a column for "North and South America." Early historical events are in increments of thousands of years, then hundreds, then tens. Modern history, beginning in 1933, is in increments of months The "General History" column includes important events from all cultures, eastern and western, although it contains more western history (e.g., "1621--celebration of the first Thanksgiving. The three-day festival . . . is modeled on the biblical Festival of Sukkoth"). "Jewish History" gives details specific to the Jewish people (e.g., "May, 1949--A food rationing system is introduced in Israel; every citizen is allowed about 2,500 calories of food value every day"). "Jewish Culture" analyses literature, including the Bible and Talmud, art, music, and aspects of daily Jewish life (e.g., "260-- Following an ancient tradition of translating laws, Jews of Alexandria, Egypt, render the Torah in Greek"). Throughout the book, names of non-Jews are followed by an asterisk A few black-and-white photographs and maps add interest to this book. Two dozen tables provide such statistics as "American Immigrants to Israel, 1950-1991" and "Germany's Jews in Modern Times." A glossary defines several hundred words, and a very detailed index of more than 60 pages refers back to pages and specific columns in the chronology. The compilers are Gribetz, a Jewish community leader; Edward L. Greenstein, a professor at the Jewish Theological Seminary of America; and Regina S. Stein, who teaches Jewish history The fascinating information contained in this volume is arranged in an attractive and useful format. Its reasonable price makes it a high-priority purchase in any library where the subject is of interest.
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