Next Article in Journal
A Mathematical Analysis of Maria Valtorta’s Mystical Writings
Next Article in Special Issue
The Exilic Imperative of American Jewry
Previous Article in Journal
Thank God We Are Creatures: Hannah Arendt’s Cryptotheology
Previous Article in Special Issue
Whence Orthodox Jewish Feminism? Cognitive Dissonance and Religious Change in the United States
Open AccessArticle

The American Jewish Future after Immigration and Ethnicity Fade: H. A. Wolfson’s Analysis in 1918

Levy Economics Institute, Bard College, 30 Campus Rd, Annandale-On-Hudson, NY 12504, USA
Religions 2018, 9(11), 372; https://doi.org/10.3390/rel9110372
Received: 11 October 2018 / Revised: 12 November 2018 / Accepted: 14 November 2018 / Published: 19 November 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue The Jewish Experience in America)
H. A. Wolfson arrived in the United States at 16 from the Lithuanian region of the Russian Empire and at Harvard as a freshman five years later. He remained at Harvard until his death in 1974, as Emeritus Professor of Hebrew Literature and Philosophy. Among the most important historians of western religious philosophy, he published on contemporary issues only until 1925 and even then only rarely. Nevertheless, his 1918 article, “Pomegranates”, deserves attention. Wolfson clearly followed debates about the American ethnic future. He carved out an original and unexpected position on that issue, and on the American Jewish future within that context. He perceptively rejected Horace Kallen’s views of a “multi-national America”, and like Israel Zangwill’s Melting Pot, he stressed that full cultural and political assimilation would occur in the United States. But unlike Zangwill, he argued that Jewish religious creativity would find a long-term place in American life, once freed of its national trappings. Strongly supporting a Hebraic renaissance and a Jewish homeland in Palestine, he also emphasized with great force that the “we”—the east-European Jewish intellectuals and the Zionists—had greatly misunderstood the promise of Reform Judaism for the diaspora. View Full-Text
Keywords: American Judaism; melting pot; pluralism; assimilation; Zionism; Yiddish nationalism American Judaism; melting pot; pluralism; assimilation; Zionism; Yiddish nationalism
MDPI and ACS Style

Perlmann, J. The American Jewish Future after Immigration and Ethnicity Fade: H. A. Wolfson’s Analysis in 1918. Religions 2018, 9, 372.

Show more citation formats Show less citations formats
Note that from the first issue of 2016, MDPI journals use article numbers instead of page numbers. See further details here.

Article Access Map by Country/Region

1
Search more from Scilit
 
Search
Back to TopTop