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Faculty Book: M. Herbert Danzger

M. Herbert Danzger

Returning to Tradition: The Contemporary Revival of Orthodox Judaism
(Yale University Press, 1989; re-issued in paperback, 2005) 

In recent years, many young American and Israeli Jews raised in non-religious families have chosen to become practicing Orthodox Jews, eating only kosher food, honoring the Sabbath, and observing laws of family purity that require periods of sexual abstinence by husband and wife and modesty in dress and behavior. This book is based upon more than two hundred interviews with newly Orthodox Jews, their rabbis, teachers, and recruiters, and hundreds of hours in yeshivot (seminaries) and outreach programs in America and Israel. The data reveal why they became Orthodox Jews, how Orthodoxy was brought to their attention, how they were socialized into their new commitment, and what sort of life they entered, with what rewards and at what costs. It also describes how Orthodox Judaism is being reshaped by an unprecedented attempt to reach out to those who want to learn about it, and examines its organizational structures and recruitment techniques. M. Herbert Danzger is a professor of sociology at Lehman College and The Graduate Center.

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Submitted on: DEC 1, 2005

Category: Sociology