Summer Scholar 2019

June 2-4, 2019

18th Annual Summer Scholar Institute
Deborah Dash Moore

Topics will include:

  • City of Promises: A History of New York Jews
  • GI Jews: How World War II Changed a Generation
  • Jewish Identity Politics

Deborah Dash Moore is Frederick C. L. Huetwell Professor of History and Judaic Studies at the University of Michigan. She specializes in twentieth century American Jewish history. A passionate urbanite, she lives and works in Ann Arbor with frequent visits to New York City to see family and friends, and to pound the sidewalks and soak up the city’s fast pace. She is the author of a trilogy. Her first book, At Home in America: Second Generation New York Jews (1981), explores how the children of immigrants created an ethnic world that blended elements of Jewish and American culture into a vibrant urban society. In GI Jews: How World War II Changed a Generation (2004), she charts the lives of fifteen young Jewish men as they faced military service and tried to make sense of its demands, simultaneously wrestling with what it meant to be an American and a Jew.

A Washington Post Best Book of the Year, GI Jews, is a powerful, intimate portrayal of the costs of a conflict that was at once physical, emotional, and spiritual. To the Golden Cities: Pursuing the American Jewish Dream in Miami and L. A. (1994) follows those Jews who chose to move to new homes after World War II and examines the type of communities and politics that flourished in these rapidly growing centers. Issues of leadership, authority and accomplishment have also engaged her attention, most prominently in the award-winning two-volume Jewish Women in America: An Historical Encyclopedia (1997), which she edited with Paula Hyman, of blessed memory. In 2001 together with Howard Rock she explored the visual dimensions of urban life and the challenge of blending social history with images. Cityscapes: A History of New York in Images suggests that how we see the city affects how we think about it. This led her to essay a short book on the Urban Origins of American Judaism (2014) that argues for the powerful impact of cities’ diversity in fostering a pluralist Jewish American religious culture.

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