Cover

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Title page, Series page, Copyright, Dedication, About the Author

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Contents

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pp. vii-viii

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Preface

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pp. ix-xv

Another election season has passed and again Republican political leaders raised high hopes that this time the Democratic hold on the Jewish electorate would be broken, and again they were disappointed. Unlike the descendants of the immigrants with whom his forebearers entered the country, ...

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1. Jewish Political Culture: The American Wrinkle

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pp. 1-68

It does not take long to discover that while pundits ponder the importance of the Jewish vote in practice it is difficult to identify a collective Jewish political identity other than the fact that there are ballots cast by voters whose names and voting districts indicate that they may be Jewish. ...

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2. American Jewish Liberalism: How Deep the Roots?

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pp. 69-112

Whatever else we can observe about Jewish political culture few will take issue with the fact that, of the triad of shaping forces examined here, its abiding liberalism exerts the strongest continuous impact. Jewish voters proudly identify themselves as liberal.1 Explanations for its persistence range from certainty that it is the continuing impact of humanistic values deeply embedded in scripture (Torah) to theories proffered by social psychologists related to Jewish social marginality. ...

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3. The New Deal Jewish Liberal Amalgam

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pp. 113-166

Just as the prosperous twenties had been dominated by the libertarian notion of “the less government the better,” so the New Deal decade that followed promised to be one fueled by the idea that government must play a role in the economy. The liberal ascendancy of the thirties pulled Jewish liberalism with it. ...

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4. The Liberal Zionist Entanglement

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pp. 167-203

Zionism began as a national movement like others incubated in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, with one marked difference. Customarily, national movements claimed the right of nationhood for people already living in the land. Zionism proposed to bring Jews living in exile back to reclaim the land and to restore nationhood to a people that for thousands of years had lived outside the land. ...

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5. Israel’s Resonance in American Jewish Politics

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pp. 204-236

There is a lack of certainty regarding the degree to which the Israel issue determines Jewish voting preferences. On the one hand, there is evidence that a mere rumor that an office seeker is less supportive of Israel than his or her opponent is believed to be sufficient to turn the Jewish vote.1 ...

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6. Holocaust Consciousness, Liberal

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pp. 237-282

If liberalism in its various manifestations represents the soul of American Jewish political culture, and Zionism and its offspring Israel represent its central focus, then the Holocaust is its obsession. The experience of genocide has been absorbed into Jewish communal memory now extended onto the third generation. ...

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Epilogue

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pp. 283-306

The Jews of America are prosperous and secure, but the price of full acceptance in the most benevolent host culture in their long history is a progressive weakening of communal bonds. Modernity has sundered the Jewish tribal tent. The political culture produced by a free people is so varied that it raises questions of whether indeed there is such an entity as a single Jewish political persona. ...

Notes

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pp. 307-338

Select Bibliography

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pp. 339-340

Index of Names, Places, Events, and Laws

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pp. 341-358