Feeling Jewish: Nostalgia and American Jewish Religion
Rachel B. Gross presents her new book, Beyond the Synagogue: Jewish Nostalgia as Religious Practice (NYU Press, 2021).
Beyond the Synagogue argues that nostalgic activities such as conducting Jewish genealogical research, visiting Jewish historic sites, and eating traditional Jewish foods should be understood not simply as cultural but as religious practices that are specific to American Judaism. Rachel B. Gross' research suggests that the embrace of nostalgia provides evidence of an alternative, under-appreciated way of being Jewish and of maintaining Jewish continuity, outside of traditional institutions and practices, such as attendance at synagogue -- and that these alternative practices illuminate how many American Jews are finding and making meaning within American Judaism today.
Rachel B. Gross is ;Assistant Professor and John and Marcia Goldman Chair in American Jewish Studies in the Department of Jewish Studies at San Francisco State University.
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