By Shaul Magid

How do American Jews establish as either Jewish and American? American Post-Judaism argues that Zionism and the Holocaust, anchors of up to date American Jewish identification, will now not be facilities of id formation for destiny generations of yankee Jews. Shaul Magid articulates a brand new, post-ethnic American Jewishness. He discusses pragmatism and spirituality, monotheism and post-monotheism, Jesus, Jewish legislations, sainthood and self-realization, and the which means of the Holocaust in case you have by no means recognized survivors. Magid offers Jewish Renewal as a circulation that takes this radical cultural transition heavily in its strivings for a brand new period in Jewish idea and practice.

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16 Many Jews in America identify as Jews primarily through the notion of a relatedness that speaks to Weber’s and Smith’s notion of cultural formation, religion being only one piece of that group identity. 18 This is not to suggest these theories can be resurrected. The conditions of twenty-­first-­century America make that impossible. 20 New formulations of these ideas could serve to construct new forms of identity in a postethnic civilization. There is considerable fear in the contemporary Ameri­can Jewish community that America’s acceptance of Jews and Judaism—perhaps coupled with Ameri­ ca’s postethnic turn—could result in the disappearance of both.

Given the more recent postethnic turn, this dyad (integration-­survival) is complicated by the removal of one of Judaism’s most crucial components: ethnic distinctiveness. 58 The vexing relationship between religion/culture and eth­­nicity as markers of identity is not unique to the Ameri­can Jewish experience; it has existed in vari­ous forms for most of Jewish history. ”59 Such a depiction is of­ten used to exemplify a paragon of Judaism’s distinctiveness. But Buber’s comment is both anachronistic Be the Jew You Make 25 and simplistic.

117 In such a society, even as tradition has a place, its place will always be refracted through the lens of the new. The “new” newness in our society has taken the form of a postethnicity that challenges Jews to revise their Be the Jew You Make 33 notion of ethnos as a static and reliable way to define Jewishness. In some way, this is not the price of postmodernity but has a genealogy that extends back to the nineteenth century when Jews were formulating the contours of Ameri­can Judaism. Whether this is a passing fad, we do not know.

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