The Journey Home: Jewish Women and the American Century

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Free Press, 1997 - Biography & Autobiography - 410 pages
In recent decades, prominent American Jewish women like Bella Abzug and Betty Friedan have made headlines and history, challenging the constraints facing women in American public life. Few realize that these women embody a hundred-year legacy of remarkable activism. From suffrage to birth control, from trade unionism to higher education, from civil rights to feminism to every aspect of popular culture, Jewish women have been in the vanguard, leading key social movements and shaping cultural consciousness. Anarchists and Zionists, 'sob sister' writers and Supreme Court justices, rabbis and reformers, personalities as diverse as Emma Goldman, Sophie Tucker and Gertrude Stein have left their indelible mark on the American century. Joyce Antler profiles these women leaders in "The Journey Home," interweaving social history with brilliant portraiture. In a fresh and lively narrative, she examines the political conflicts and personal tensions that animated their lives as they redefined the landscapes of American culture and society. To change their nation they battled class and gender prejudice, anti-Semitism, and anti-immigrant fervor. They drew sustenance from Jewish tradition but always took independent stands.

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The journey home: Jewish women and the American century

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In this fascinating and persuasive work, Antler (women's studies, Brandeis Univ.) explores the lives of notable 20th-century Jewish American women from Emma Lazarus, Emma Goldman, and Golda Meir to ... Read full review


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About the author (1997)

Joyce Antler is the Samuel Lane Professor of American Jewish History and Culture at Brandeis University. She is the author or editor of nine books, including The Journey Home: How Jewish Women Shaped Modern America and Talking Back: Images of Jewish Women in Popular Culture. She lives in Brookline,
Massachusetts, with her husband, and is the mother of two daughters.

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