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Jazz Age Jews
Author: Michael Alexander

ISBN: 9780691116532
Format: Paperback
Number Of Pages: 264
Published: 27 July 2003
Country of Publication: US
Dimensions (cm): 22.9 x 15.2 x 1.7
Description:


By the 1920s, Jews were--by all economic, political, and cultural measures of the day--making it in America. But as these children of immigrants took their places in American society, many deliberately identified with groups that remained excluded. Despite their success, Jews embraced resistance more than acculturation, preferring marginal status to assimilation.

The stories of Al Jolson, Felix Frankfurter, and Arnold Rothstein are told together to explore this paradox in the psychology of American Jewry. All three Jews were born in the 1880s, grew up around American Jewish ghettos, married gentile women, entered the middle class, and rose to national fame. All three also became heroes to the American Jewish community for their association with events that galvanized the country and defined the Jazz Age. Rothstein allegedly fixed the 1919 World Series--an accusation this book disputes. Frankfurter defended the Italian anarchists Sacco and Vanzetti. Jolson brought jazz music to Hollywood for the first talking film, "The Jazz Singer," and regularly impersonated African Americans in blackface. Each of these men represented a version of the American outsid...

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