Despite the importance of historical and contemporary migration to the American Jewish community, popular awareness of the diversity and complexity of the American Jewish migration legacy is limited and largely focused upon Yiddish-speaking Jews who left the Pale of Settlement in Eastern Europe between 1880 and 1920 to settle in eastern and midwestern cities.
Wandering Jews provides readers with a broader understanding of the Jewish experience of migration in the United States and elsewhere. It describes the record of a wide variety of Jewish migrant groups, including those encountering different locations of settlement, historical periods, and facets of the migration experience. While migrants who left the Pale of Settlement in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries are discussed, the volume's authors also explore less well-studied topics. These include the fate of contemporary Jewish academics who seek to build communities in midwestern college towns; the adaptation experience of recent Jewish migrants from Latin America, Israel, and the former Soviet Union; the adjustment of Iranian Jews; the experience of contemporary Jewish migrants in France and Belgium; the return of Israelis living abroad; and a number of other topics. Interdisciplinary, the volume draws upon history, sociology, geography, and other fields.
Written in a lively and accessible style, Wandering Jews will appeal to a wide range of readers, including students and scholars in Jewish studies, international migration, history, ethnic studies, and religious studies, as well as general-interest readers.
Steven J. Gold is a professor and graduate program director in the Department of Sociology at Michigan State University. His scholarly interests include international migration, ethnic economies, ethnic community development, qualitative field methods, and visual sociology. Gold is the author, coauthor, or coeditor of eight books, including The Israeli Diaspora, which won the Thomas and Znaniecki Award from the American Sociology Association's International Migration Section for the best book on international migration in 2003. Author of over one hundred journal articles and book chapters, Gold received the Charles Horton Cooley Award for Distinguished Scholarship in Sociology from the Michigan Sociology Association in 2007 and the Distinguished Career Award from the American Sociological Association's International Migration Section in 2019.