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Jewish RadicalsA Documentary History$
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Tony Michels

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780814757437

Published to NYU Press Scholarship Online: March 2016

DOI: 10.18574/nyu/9780814757437.001.0001

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“Jewish Working People … Have Lost All Interest in the Synagogue” (1905)

“Jewish Working People … Have Lost All Interest in the Synagogue” (1905)

(p.168) 31 “Jewish Working People … Have Lost All Interest in the Synagogue” (1905)
Jewish Radicals

Phillip Davis

NYU Press

This chapter is a firsthand account of the abandonment of religion widespread among immigrant Jews, by a Boston-based social worker and former labor organizer, Phillip Davis. Davis describes a world where the average American Jewish workingman seems to have abandoned a faith tradition that's deeply rooted in their heritage and identity. It was during his tenure as an organizer for the Ladies' Garment Workers that he realized the true extent of Jewish orthodoxy among the workers as a class—the revolt against the Jewish religion had assumed striking proportions. A strong reason for this, according to the intellectuals interviewed in the chapter, is because prominent socialist movements are spreading their atheistic beliefs among the Jewish working class.

Keywords:   Phillip Davis, Jewish working class, Judaism, Jewish orthodoxy, immigrant Jews, abandonment of religion, socialist movements

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