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Theatrical LiberalismJews and Popular Entertainment in America$
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Andrea Most

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780814708194

Published to NYU Press Scholarship Online: March 2016

DOI: 10.18574/nyu/9780814708194.001.0001

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Curtain Call

Curtain Call

(p.241) Curtain Call
Theatrical Liberalism

Andrea Most

NYU Press

This chapter argues that theatrical liberalism remains alive and well in America and that Jewish artists, writers, directors, and performers have given new life to popular culture forms by filling them with explicitly Judaic religious content. Many of these recent works mirror the approach of Angels in America, using mysticism or other aspects of Jewish thought and practice as symbols of authenticity. Others, however, have begun to gesture at the potential inherent in a fully self-conscious acknowledgement of the place of religion in secular culture. It further argues that theatrical liberalism offers not a single definition of a Jewish liberal self but rather the debate itself as the fundamental fact of Jewish liberalism.

Keywords:   theatrical liberalism, popular culture, religious culture, secular culture, Judaism, Jewish liberalism

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