The Jewish Metropolis: A tour of Jewish New York through Time and Space

Sunday, June 9

USA 12:00 pm PT / 3:00 pm ET

UK 8:00 pm / France 9:00 pm / Israel 10:00 pm

The talk will last approximately 90 minutes

About this talk

New York City is the greatest Jewish metropolis of all time. At its peak, Jews constituted nearly 30% of the city's population, and even in the 21st century, after decades of demographic decline, there are more Jews in the five boroughs than in Tel Aviv and Jerusalem combined. Not surprisingly, Jews have influenced New York's culture, economy, and politics. But the Jewish presence is also very diverse. 

From the establishment of the first community in 1654 to the present, New York Jews have pioneered religious reform and led the resurgence of traditionalist orthodoxy; they have spoken English, German, Yiddish, Ladino, Hebrew, Russian, Arabic, and English again; they have been among the richest financiers and poorest shop workers; they have provided the base for political radicalism and liberalism, and the intellectual power behind resurgent conservatism. Jewish neighborhoods have come and gone, and come again. 

This talk will offer a virtual tour of Jewish New York through time and space – from the 17th century to the 21st, and from tenements of the Lower East Side to leafy Riverdale.

About Daniel

Daniel Soyer is professor of history at Fordham University. His most recent books are Left in the Center: The Liberal Party of New York and the Rise and Fall of American Social Democracy (Cornell, 2021), and, as editor, The Jewish Metropolis: New York City from the 17th to the 21st Century (Academic Studies Press, 2021). 

His other books include The Emerging Metropolis: New York Jews in the Age of Immigration, 1840-1920 (NYU, 2012), which he wrote with Annie Polland, and which won a National Jewish Book Award, and Jewish Immigrant Associations and American Identity in New York, 1880-1939 (Harvard, 1997), winner of the Saul Viener Award of the American Jewish Historical Society. 

He has had several moments of fame, resulting from an appearance on the television series "History Detectives," from being quoted by Malcolm Gladwell in Outliers: The Story of Success (2008), and from being featured in a New York Times article about New Yorkers with deep roots in the city.

With your contribution, you will also be donating to "Masbia Soup Kitchen Network", which provides emergency food to people in need due to financial status or because of natural disasters via ready-to-eat nutritious meals and raw groceries, free of charge.