Taking Root: The Origins of the Canadian Jewish Community

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UPNE, 1993 - Religion - 341 pages
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Jews seeking a new life in Canada faced problems beyond those of other immigrants. Farm colonists often lived in communities too small to afford a rabbi or ritual slaughterer, or even to form a minyan for worship. In French Canada, Protestant and Catholic school boards battled over who was responsible for educating Jewish children. In the cities, the socialist philosophies of Jews fleeing the poverty and oppression of Europe were anathema to aggressive New World capitalists. And when suspicion or resentment arose, there was always someone to revive the old antisemitic slurs and myths. Taking Root is the meticulously researched record of how Canadian Jewry coped with these obstacles, and flourished despite them. The book covers the 160 years from the beginnings of the community in the 1760s to the end of the First World War, including the great European upheavals that forever changed the lives of the Jews of Eastern Europe and their migration to Canada. Canada's Jews took root in a nation with a distinctive history, political structure, and cultural diversity Gerald Tulchinsky weaves the threads of Canadian Jewish history into the wider Canadian fabric, and shows how the unique character of this history reflects the political, economic, and social development of the country. Drawing on letters, synagogue records, diaries, newspapers, and biographies, as well as a host of archival sources, Tulchinsky makes Taking Root not just a historical account, but a very personal one.
 

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Contents

Introduction
1
Social and Political Transformations
22
Montreal Jewry in the Era of the de Solas
40
Profit and Loss on the Urban Frontier
61
Beginnings in the East and the West
82
THE EMERGENCE OF A NATIONAL
95
Beginnings of Western Colonization
109
Chapters Travails of Urbanization
129
THE EAST EUROPEAN ERA 19001920
157
Chapter io If I Forget Thee O Jerusalem
181
Chapter a Corner of Pain and Anguish
204
Is It Good for the Jews? 23 1
231
Enlightenment Protest and Reform
255
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