Jewish New York

The Remarkable Story of a City and a People

512 pages

94 illustrations

October, 2017

ISBN: 9781479850389



Add to Cart Available: 9/15/2017

Also available in


Deborah Dash Moore is Frederick G. L. Huetwell Professor of History and Judaic Studies at the University of Michigan. She is the author/editor of a number of books, including GI Jews: How World War II Changed a Generation and, with Howard Rock, Cityscapes: A History of New York in Images.

All books by Deborah Dash Moore

Jeffrey S. Gurock is Libby M. Klaperman Professor of Jewish History at Yeshiva University. A prize-winning author, he has written or edited fifteen books in American Jewish history. Gurock has served as chair of the Academic Council of the American Jewish Historical Society and as associate editor of American Jewish History. He lives with his family in the Riverdale section of the Bronx.

All books by Jeffrey S. Gurock

Annie Polland is Executive Director of the American Jewish Historical Society. She was previously Executive Vice President for Programs and Education at the Lower East Side Tenement Museum.

All books by Annie Polland

Howard B. Rock is a Professor of History Emeritus at Florida International University. He is winner of the 2012  Everett Family Foundation Jewish Book of the Year Award, National Jewish Book Council and the 2012 Runner-Up for the Dixon Ryan Manuscript Award presented by the New York Historical Association for Haven of Liberty: New York Jews in the New World, 1654-1865. He is also the author or editor of five other books, including Cityscapes: A History of New York in Images, written with Deborah Dash Moore. 

All books by Howard B. Rock

Daniel Soyer teaches history at Fordham University in the Bronx. He is the author of the prize-winning Jewish Immigrant Associations and American Identity in New York, 1880-1939, and co-editor and translator of My Future is in America: East European Jewish Immigrant Autobiographies. 

All books by Daniel Soyer

Diana L. Linden is author of Ben Shahn's New Deal Murals: Jewish Identity in the American Scene and co-editor of The Social and the Real: Political Art of the 1930s in the Western Hemisphere 

All books by Diana L. Linden

The definitive history of Jews in New York and how they transformed the city
Based on the acclaimed multi-volume series, City of Promises: A History of the Jews of New York, Jewish New York reveals the multifaceted world of one of the city’s most important ethnic and religious groups. Spanning three centuries, Jewish New York traces the earliest arrival of Jews in New Amsterdam to the recent immigration of Jews from the former Soviet Union.                         
Jewish immigrants transformed New York. They built its clothing industry and constructed huge swaths of apartment buildings. New York Jews helped to make the city the center of the nation’s publishing industry and shaped popular culture in music, theater, and the arts. With a strong sense of social justice, a dedication to civil rights and civil liberties, and a belief in the duty of government to provide social welfare for all its citizens, New York Jews influenced the city, state, and nation with a new wave of social activism. 
In turn, New York transformed Judaism and stimulated religious pluralism, Jewish denominationalism, and contemporary feminism. The city’s neighborhoods hosted unbelievably diverse types of Jews, from Communists to Hasidim.   
Jewish New York not only describes Jews’ many positive influences on New York, but also exposes the group’s struggles with poverty and anti-Semitism.  These injustices reinforced an exemplary commitment to remaking New York into a model multiethnic, multiracial, and multireligious world city. 


  • "A definitive look at how Jewish New Yorkers and New York City shaped each other. The lively narrative begins in the 17th century, with the arrival of the first Jews in North America, and runs through 2015. This is the best kind of popular history: one that does not sacrifice nuance or detail for accessibility."

    STARRED Publishers Weekly

  • "Chronicling the story of Jews in New York is an undertaking as tall as the Empire State Building, and as multilayered as a pastrami on rye from Katz’s Delicatessen. But it has been achieved in Jewish New York."

    Times of Israel

  • "Jewish New York.. . chronicle[s] the growth of Jewish influence on the city through the 21st century, citing the success of several prominent New Yorkers, including two former Brooklynites, Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Bernie Sanders."

    The New York Times

  • "This survey of Jewish New York is a valuable contribution to Jewish literature, and the appended visual essay is an added bonus. An epic story of a people who have been, and remain, central to the life of New York City."

    Kirkus Review

  • "American Jews aren’t going anywhere. What they are going to be is very, very different. . . . This difference is nowhere more startling than when observed within the longer trajectory of New York’s Jewish history. Allowing us to look back at that history is Jewish New York. . . a thorough and readable work."

    The Forward

  • "A lively and visually rich volume, Jewish New York explores the history of Jewish New Yorkers and their role in transforming New York into the distinctive global city it is today . . . . This incredible story, known only in fragments, now appears in a single volume."

    Brooklyn Daily Eagle

  • "Jewish New York is a substantial and enlightening social history, taking us from the first Jews arriving from the Dutch colonies in 1654 to the city that became home to 1.1 million Jews by the First World War, to the return of suburbanised Jews in recent years — as financiers and creatives — to the very Lower East Side their grandparents struggled to leave."

    The Jewish Chronicle

  • "A highly enjoyable read, made all the more pleasurable by the beautiful illustrations sprinkled throughout the book."

    Gotham Center

  • "Jewish New York is a substantial and enlightening social history . . . The book is a galaxy of things I didn’t know."

    —Jonathan Margolis, The Jewish Chronicle

  • "A dramatic telling of our tale, looking at New York as a home to Jews who came at different times, from different places, who made their different ways in the city and significantly made the city in the process.  The book takes a fierce look at questions of national origin, class, language, work and wealth, explains what it means to be Jewish in New York, what the roots are of the city’s diversity, and how Jews grew in and with New York over more than 300 years."

    —Ruth Messinger, Former Manhattan Borough President

  • "Jewish New York deftly combines crisp writing, sharp analysis and sophisticated discussions of visual images to explore the evolving relationship between a world city and its Jews. Reaching from the seventeenth century to the present, and weaving together big themes and illuminating lives, the book delves into topics as varied as religion, politics, popular culture and gender. Essential for understanding both Jewish experiences and the broad contours of New York’s history."

    —Robert W. Snyder, author of Crossing Broadway: Washington Heights and the Promise of New York City

  • "Deborah Dash Moore has provided a magisterial history of the Jews of New York.  A hub of both American and Jewish innovation, New York’s bustling metropolis became home to millions of Jews. New York gave Jewish life a distinct character, even as Jews helped to shape the essence of the city.  This fascinating study explores the streets, synagogues, politics, and organizations of New York Jewry as well as its diverse cultural expressions.  Moore’s mastery of New York Jewish history and deep knowledge of the urban rhythms of the city shine through on every page."

    —Beth S. Wenger, Moritz and Josephine Berg Professor of History, University of Pennsylvania