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1929: Mapping the Jewish World

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1929: Mapping the Jewish World

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1929: Mapping the Jewish World
(The Goldstein-Goren Series in American Jewish History)
Edited by Hasia R. Diner and Gennady Estraikh
New York University Press, New York: 2013
ISBN: 978-0-8147-2021-9

Reviewed by Simone Bonim - September 16, 2013

This collection of fourteen essays provides a compelling glimpse of Jewish history in the watershed year of 1929. In these essays, the authors place the events chronicled in context with world history. At the same time they examine why 1929 was such a pivotal year for Jews, and the world as a whole. This collection, entitled 1929: Mapping the Jewish World, was edited by Hasia R. Diner and Gennady Estraikh.

The authors of these essays are all leading scholars in the field of Jewish history. Over the course of this reading you will gain a bird's-eye view of not only Jewish history in the broadest sense, but also the nuances of Jewish political, social, and cultural endeavors over the course of this pivotal year touching upon a broad range of subjects from literature and philanthropy to Yiddish and Trade Unionism. Taking a world view, these essays look at the state of Jewish life around the world, in general, as well as in specific countries such as America, Germany, Poland, the Soviet Union, Brazil, and Palestine.

This remarkable book will enthrall both general readers and scholars. For the later, each essay contains full endnotes that can be used as a template for further study. Overall, it provides a unique glimpse at Jewish life in the year 1929, and it serves as snapshot of pre-World War II life for Jews around the world.

1929 will make an excellent addition to all libraries, both public and private. It is also an ideal book that can be used in college level courses dealing with Jewish or World history covering the interwar period.

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