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Book Cover
Author Davis, Marni.

Title Jews and booze : becoming American in the age of prohibition / Marni Davis
Published New York : New York University Press, [2012]
Online access available from:
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Description 1 online resource (x, 262 pages) : illustrations
Series The Goldstein-Goren Series in American Jewish History
Goldstein-Goren series in American Jewish history.
Contents Setting up shop: Jews becoming Americans in the nineteenth-century alcohol trade -- Do as we Israelites do: American Jews and the gilded-age temperance movement -- Kosher wine and Jewish saloons: new Jewish immigrants enter the American alcohol trade -- An "unscrupulous Jewish type of mind": Jewish alcohol entrepreneurs and their critics -- Rabbis and other bootleggers: Jews as prohibition-era alcohol entrepreneurs -- The law of the land is the law: Jews respond to the Volstead Act
Summary "At the turn of the century, American Jews and prohibitionists viewed one another with growing suspicion. Jews believed that all Americans had the right to sell and consume alcohol, while prohibitionists insisted that alcohol commerce and consumption posed a threat to the nation's morality and security. The two groups possessed incompatible visions of what it meant to be a productive and patriotic Americanoand in 1920, when the Eighteenth Amendment to the Constitution made alcohol commerce illegal, Jews discovered that anti-Semitic sentiments had mixed with anti-alcohol ideology, threatening their reputation and their standing in American society. Though their connection to alcohol had once been a subject of communal pride, prohibition compelled Jews to choose between abandoning this historical and cultural connection and remaining outside the American mainstream. In Jews and Booze, Marni Davis examines American Jews' long and complicated relationship to alcohol during the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, the years of the national prohibition movement's rise and fall. Bringing to bear an extensive range of archival materials, Davis offers a novel perspective on a previously unstudied area of American Jewish economic activityothe making and selling of liquor, wine, and beero and reveals that alcohol commerce played a crucial role in Jewish immigrant acculturation and the growth of Jewish communities in the United States. But prohibition's triumph cast a pall on American Jews' history in the alcohol trade, forcing them to revise, clarify, and defend their communal and civic identities, both to their fellow Americans and to themselves"--Provided by publisher
Bibliography Includes bibliographical references and index
Notes Print version record
Subject Alcohol -- Law and legislation -- United States.
Alcoholic beverage industry -- United States -- History -- 19th century.
Alcoholic beverage industry -- United States -- History -- 20th century.
Jews -- Alcohol use -- United States -- Attitudes.
Acculturation -- history.
Alcohol Abstinence -- history.
Jews -- history.
United States -- Ethnic relations.
Genre/Form History.
Form Electronic book
ISBN 0814744095 (electronic bk.)
0814783848 (electronic bk.)
9780814744093 (electronic bk.)
9780814783849 (electronic bk.)