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Cosmopolitans: A Social and Cultural History of the Jews of the San Francisco Bay Area

3.63  ·  Rating details ·  16 ratings  ·  4 reviews
Levi Strauss, A.L. Gump, Yehudi Menuhin, Gertrude Stein, Adolph Sutro, Congresswoman Florence Prag Kahn--Jewish people have been so enmeshed in life in and around San Francisco that their story is a chronicle of the metropolis itself. Since the Gold Rush, Bay Area Jews have countered stereotypes, working as farmers and miners, boxers and mountaineers. They were Gold Rush ...more
Hardcover, 462 pages
Published November 5th 2009 by University of California Press (first published 2009)
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David Goldman
Nov 29, 2019 rated it really liked it
This lively and informative history of Jews in the bay area, provides a interesting framework for the Jewish particularism of the West Coast. Especially San Francisco.
Several themes emerge.
The migration Of Jewish population within the bay even with in the city itself. As one part of town became obsolete. This has left the bay with little or no traditional Jewish neighborhoods left, even in historical artifacts. It also leaves one to wonder about demographic trends in the future.


While
...more
Elaine
Dec 19, 2009 rated it really liked it
A very worthwhile history of the Jews in San Francisco -- starting with the first temples in 1851. Yes, just two years after the Gold Rush the Jews in the city could not agree on a rabbi or a philosophy or a common place of worship for both the Bavarians and the (slightly lower class)Poseners, so they created two synagogues. So many fascinating characters -- Sutro, Emperor Norton (you don't believe me? check it out!), Yehudi Menuin, Bernard Zackheim (of the Coit Tower murals) Anna Strunsky (a ...more
Michael Norwitz
May 21, 2014 rated it liked it
Although it's occasionally dry, and the range of its timeline (100 years in 360 pages) prevents the author from going into too much depth, it still manages to be an interesting read, and a useful springboard for further research.
Ellen
Feb 18, 2010 added it
fantastic... loved it all, every word, every chapter...
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