Rabbinic Leadership in Small-Town America: 1880-1940

By Lee S. Weissbach

Jewish Theological Seminary of America (JTS) Press, 2004

The author maintains that only by examining Jewish life in the small communities of America's secondary cities and towns can we come to understand the American Jewish experience in all its complexity and variety. As such, this essay considers the history of religious leadership in the small-town settlements of the United States in an effort both to examine who did and who did not provide that leadership in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries and to explore the experience of religious functionaries in small communities. Moreover, Weissbach considers the history of the religious leadership in the Reform, Conservative and Orthodox movements, profiles the rabbis who assumed leadership posts within these small communities, and discusses their motivations for doing so, among many other topics covered.

Topic: Reform Judaism, History, Cities and Suburbs, Masorti Judaism, Orthodox Judaism, Conservative Judaism, Rural and Small Town, Leadership, Clergy

Name of Publication: Jewish Religious Leadership: Image and Reality

Editor: Wertheimer, Jack

Volume/Issue: Vol.2

Page Number(s): 611-631

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Genre: Book Chapter

Coverage: United States

Language: English

Copyright Holder: Publisher

Copyright Information: Download for personal use, freely distribute link

Bibliographic Information:
Weissbach, Lee S. Rabbinic Leadership in Small-Town America: 1880-1940. Jewish Religious Leadership: Image and Reality. Jewish Theological Seminary of America (JTS) Press. 2004: 611-631. http://www.bjpa.org/Publications/details.cfm?PublicationID=5598


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