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The History of Orthodox Jewry in the United States (1880-1945) (HIS-460)
Various: distance learning format

Varies (self-study; self-paced)

March 2022 - Present.

Subject Area:
Judaic Studies / History

Number of Credits:

Learner Outcomes:

Upon completion of this course, students will be able to: discuss the history of the Orthodox Jews in America from 1880-1945; describe the challenges Jewish immigrants faced as they encountered American culture and society, and in particular the challenge of material abundance; understand both the obstacles that caused Jews to weaken in religious commitment as well as the various methods and institutions which worked to preserve tradition; outline the accomplishments of Orthodox Jews in different aspects of American society; develop a deep understanding of the causes and manifestations of anti-Semitism during this period and relations between Jews and gentiles; understand Orthodox Jewish immigrant relations with previously established Jewish groups; and forecast the behavior of typical immigrants under various circumstances and draw parallels from leaders, methods, and ideas of those times to apply them to other similar circumstances.


The History of Orthodox Jewry in the United States (1880-1945) (HIS-460) will assess the student’s knowledge of the history of Orthodox Jewry in the United States and the challenges they faced, primarily from the years 1880-1945, focusing on the influx of Russian immigrants and how they confronted American society, as well as their relations with the Jews who had arrived in the U.S. previously. It deals with the challenges of material abundance and various threats to religious life and details the variety of major steps taken by the Orthodox community to preserve Torah traditions. It also provides context on various types of anti-Semitic movements that arose at this time and important Jewish social and political leaders and legislation as it related to the Jews, as well as the varied American Jewish responses to the holocaust and the accompanying refugee crisis.

Credit recommendation:

In the upper division baccalaureate degree category, 6 semester hours in Judaic Studies, Sociology, Anthropology, History, Jewish History, or as a General Elective (2/22).