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Topic: Looking for....

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Subject: Looking for....
Date Posted: 3/21/2008 8:26 PM ET
Member Since: 5/3/2007
Posts: 945
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I am looking for the book "Why Marry Jewish?" by Doron Kornbluth.  I may bring him in to speak (I am Educator for a Reform Religious School) to my teens and want to look at the book first.

Oh, and if anyone has any info about him as a speaker, please share!!

Date Posted: 3/25/2008 7:48 AM ET
Member Since: 10/20/2007
Posts: 1,680
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O/T    Why marry Jewish?  I'll tell you from experience -  You might wind up with anti-semitic in-laws.  It was horrible!!!

Date Posted: 3/28/2008 4:27 PM ET
Member Since: 2/24/2007
Posts: 1,932
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I'm married to a non-Jew. His family are not anti-semites and actually go out of their way to respect my beliefs. On the other hand, because I wasn't a wealthy Jew growing up in a predominantly wealthy Jewish suburb of Long Island, I experienced a lot of alienation from other Jewish kids and wound up never dating a Jew because of it (not ebcause I didn't want to, the boys wanted to date rich Jewish girls....) .

I'd be really interested to know Kornbluth's take on this. Sounds like a good book. Please come back and tell us about it when you find it.

Date Posted: 3/29/2008 8:52 AM ET
Member Since: 10/20/2007
Posts: 1,680
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I also grew up in a predominately wealthy suburb of Philadelphia and experienced the same kind of snobbery from other Jews.  However, my first husband was Jewish.  I'm glad that my children came from that marriage (which ended in divorce).

I waited a long time before dating again and eventually met a very nice non-Jewish man.  At first, I didn't notice a certain coldness in their attitude towards me.  As time passed, it became evident that the only reason my husband and I could come up with was the fact that I am Jewish.  Unfortunately, he passed away at a young age and that's when their venom exploded.  I chose to send his body home so they could bury him in a Christian ceremony.  I didn't attend the funeral.  I mourned him in my own way.  My relationship with them was alot worse than the snobbery I experienced growing up in a wealthy Jewish community. 

Date Posted: 3/29/2008 7:38 PM ET
Member Since: 10/17/2006
Posts: 1,427
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Reading these posts made me remember listening to Abie's Irish Rose on radio when I was a little girl in Kansas City, Mo., being raised by  my Methodist Episcopalian grandmother.  Her two best women friends were a Jewish lady and a lady from Belfast, Ireland.  This was in the Depression years. 

Our next door neighbor was a German Lutheran pastor who preached at the City Mission.  On the other side were the Healeys, a Catholic family, and behind us were the Raccuglias (you can guess what ethnicity). 

lMy elementary school room was a real hodge-podge, with classmates named Sebe (Russian), Psyche (Greek), Beryl (a boy), Jimmy Modlin (?), Florence Goldfinger, Norma Thoes, Dorothy Oeschlinger, etc. etc. Hubby's classmates, in Chicago were likewise, though the mix ran to Jewish, Greek, and Scandinavian, particularly Swedish. 

Now, thinking back to those days, they seem like some long ago, far away, tolerant time and place.....were they real, or has nostalgia set in on me?

Date Posted: 3/31/2008 10:31 AM ET
Member Since: 6/20/2007
Posts: 4,974
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Hey Marci, I grew up on Long island too!  I am married to a Christian, but am very lucky--his family goes out of their way to respect my beliefs.  His family gives our sons both Chanukah and Christmas gifts, and sends cards and calls on all the major Jewish holidays.  I was very concerned at first with how they'd take a Jewish DIL and Jewish grandkids, but they've said that all they wanted for their son and grandkids was a warm loving home.  I am very lucky.

When I was in college, the mothers of the guys I dated were the ones that had problems with their sons dating a Jewish girl. 

ETA: I never ruled out dating a Jewish guy, but I never found one that I was interested in! 



Last Edited on: 3/31/08 10:32 AM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 4/2/2008 9:37 PM ET
Member Since: 2/24/2007
Posts: 1,932
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Sheryl, what part of LI are you from? I'm from Merrick.

It's funny how some of the parents of the boys I dated reacted to their sons dating a Jewish girl. A boy I dated for many years had very open minded parents (Irish Catholic) and never made me feel I was "not right" for their son and in fact, used to tell him things like "She's a good girl from a good family" which I used to translate as I am a "nice Jewish girl", since there was nothing else to differentiate me from any other family. On the other hand, I dated a boy from a strict Irish Catholic family and his mother came pretty close to actually forbidding him to date me. Her cold shoulder ruined that relationship and I stopped seeing him. I guess I was pretty lucky in the long run because most of the guys I dated later in life, before meeting my husband, never had an issue with my religion. All knew my feelings that if we were to get serious, any children would be raised as Jews, and none bowed out due to that particular discussion.

When we belonged to a temple, my husband would go with me and he would enjoy the services and especially the Rabbi. He's not religious in the least yet he celebrates all the Jewish holidays with my family, and we always celebrate Christmas and Easter with him and my Christian BIL.

Phyllis, sorry you had such a bad experience. They sound like icky people in general.

Date Posted: 4/3/2008 9:20 PM ET
Member Since: 6/20/2007
Posts: 4,974
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HI Marci,

I grew up in Farmingville, and my parents still live there.

DH goes to church on Sundays, but it was discussed before we even got married that our sons would be raised Jewish.  He agreed--and told me that I needed to set an example and go to temple regularly.  So I go almost every Friday night, and I love it.  I take my 4 year old to family services and to "Tot Shabbat", as well as the temple's Chanukah dinners and events like that.  DH has joined us for some of the special events, but in general he stays home with the baby while I'm at temple.

At home we celebrate both the Christian and Jewish holidays.  I love it!  And the best thing is that my children will grow up more knowledgeable about religion than I ever did!

Date Posted: 4/4/2008 1:06 PM ET
Member Since: 2/24/2007
Posts: 1,932
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I was lucky to be raised in a family that was involved in our temple so I received a religious education from the time I was 3 (Torah for Tots) through my confirmation at age 16 and was always involved with youth groups, conclaves and other interesting and educational outlets.  My Mom was not raised to be particularly religious because her father was agnostic, but her mother was conservative. My father was raised Orthodox. Together, my parents raised us as Reform.

Interestingly, my maternal great grandfather was a Rabbi and was descended from 700 years of Landau Rabbi's. My grandfather on the otherhand was agnostic and did not carry on the tradition, nor did any of his brothers. My GGF's brothers did and so the family Rabbinical line continues, just not in my branch.

I have always been fascinated by religion and theology.

Date Posted: 4/4/2008 3:56 PM ET
Member Since: 10/20/2007
Posts: 1,680
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Marci,

I think it was a generational thing and my late husband's family came from a small town in upstate Pa.   They were not exposed to Jews where they lived.   The funny thing is they really liked me before they found out I was Jewish (LOL). 

My daughter is with a Christian man and they have a wonderful relationship.  I couldn't ask for a better son-in-law.

I'm glad you're happy and have a soul-mate.

Date Posted: 4/4/2008 11:44 PM ET
Member Since: 2/24/2007
Posts: 1,932
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I agree with you Phyllis re: a generational thing. I know how my Gran could look past almost any kind of fault somone had if they we Jewish, yet had limited tolerance if they were not.

Nice to hear that you have a wonderful SIL. :-)

Date Posted: 9/10/2008 1:54 PM ET
Member Since: 3/15/2007
Posts: 7
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mom2mitchellshayna, I'm glad to hear that you're organizing a program for Jewish teens on the importance of their dating and eventually other Jews. I wish I had the book to give you, but I don't. As a 20 year old from an interfaith family, I see how fewer and fewer people are dating other Jews and the effect its having on the community. Even though I was raised Reconstructionist, a group that has always welcomed inter-faith families and converts with open arms - I see how the others from my Hebrew School class aren't dating other Jews and it concerns me. Statistics show that only a small percentage of those who are raised in interfaith families actually continue to be Jewish as adults, despite efforts to do so. Its really the fault of synogogues, who don't do enough to keep teenagers involved after their bar/bat mitzvahs. I really hope your program goes well, and good luck to you!

Date Posted: 9/13/2008 10:03 PM ET
Member Since: 6/8/2007
Posts: 796
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I am married to a non-Jew.  I never really dated any Jewish guys, but that was never a conscientious decision.  Like Sheryl, I jsut never met one I was interested in.  ( And going to college in Alabama very much limited my opportunities to meet many!)  My husband was from what in the south is considered an even "worst" mixed marriage--his father was Baptist and his mother Catholic.  The kids went to the Baptist church with their dad.  My husband was never big on organized religion when he was younger, but had no problem accepting my Judaism.  We were married in a Temple by a rabbi, have raised our children as Jewish, and only celebrated the Jewish holidays in our home.  My husband's father died before we were married, but his mother was always very accepting of and interested in my Jewish traditions.  While we would go to her house on Christmas day, she always wrapped my children's gifts in Hanukkah wrapping paper.   The irony in the whole story is that my mother-in-law grew up in Austria and as a young woman during WWII was given the choice of either going to work for the Nazi army or going to jail.  After the Americans liberated Austria, she fell in love with an American soldier (my father-in-law) and her own mother --who was very pro-Nazi--disinherited her for that!

Date Posted: 9/15/2008 12:01 PM ET
Member Since: 6/20/2007
Posts: 4,974
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Thanks for sharing such a great story, Robin!