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On Wall Street

From: Dissent
Volume 61, Number 2, Spring 2014
p. 100 | 10.1353/dss.2014.0037



For over half a century, Dissent made its home in what was once affectionately called in these pages “the intellectual kibbutz of Manhattan’s Upper West Side.” The neighborhood was synonymous with Jewish intellectual life. It was a small world, perhaps, with its own “ruts of tradition and conformity,” but it was a world that regarded arguing about the larger world as an ethical imperative—in other words, it was a world for Dissent. Most of the magazine’s editors lived on the Upper West Side (some still do), and Dissent lived in the apartment of two of its founders, Simone and Stanley Plastrik. The office emerged each morning from a closet and was packed away again by the evening. The magazine needed a new home when Simone died in 1999, but it didn’t leave the neighborhood or even move into a commercial office.

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