From Publishers Weekly
This brief, illustrated account of four centuries of Jewish immigration to the "golden land," is American Jewish history for beginners. Telushkin, a noted popularizer of Jewish history and culture (Jewish Literacy, etc.), offers an introduction to the first arrival of Jews to New Amsterdam in 1654 (leaving Brazil a step ahead of the Portuguese Inquisition), to the Lower East Side in the early 20th century and other historical moments. Telushkin's narrative touches on such themes as "A Passion for Education" and "Jews and Popular Culture" and highlights significant trends such as German peddlers who founded retail empires and Jewish contributions to the entertainment industry. He also takes notes of poverty and conflicts between established German Jews and the wave of Russian immigrants around the turn of the 20th century. The text is supplemented with photographs, and removable artifacts in reproduction (
la the Griffin and Sabine series) that augment almost every spread: a pamphlet advertising a Yiddish theater production, a handwritten copy of Emma Lazarus's "The New Colossus," a multilingual flyer urging Cleveland immigrants to send their children to public schools. The simple text and trendy pullouts may make this attractive to younger readers.
Copyright 2002 Reed Business Information, Inc.
From the Inside Flap
The Golden Land is a museum-in-a-book that devotes a double-page spread--complete with removable letters, documents, and personal effects--to each of the successive waves of Jewish immigration to America, from the Germans and Eastern Europeans in the 19th and early 20th centuries to the refugees from the Nazis in the 1930s and ?40s to the Soviet Jews in the 1970s and '80s.America was the first nation where Jews were regarded as citizens from the very beginning, and The Golden Land reveals how they converted opportunity to success in fields from commerce, medicine, and science to movies, music, and literature.
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The book includes facsimiles of George Washington?s letter to a community of Jews in Rhode Island, Emma Lazarus?s poem that was later inscribed on the base of the Statue of Liberty, Irving Berlin?s handwritten lyrics for ?God Bless America,? a quiz challenging readers to guess the original names of American-Jewish show-business celebrities, and plenty of other materials to give readers a real feel for how America changed the Jews and how the Jews changed America.