Jewish American Studies

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In 1654 a raggle-taggle band of twenty three Jews arrived in New Amsterdam, a New World colony on the shores of a continent with no established Jewish presence. The next three hundred years marked both the founding and flourishing of the United States of America and the establishment of a Jewish American community woven into the very fabric of the new nation. The Jewish Americans met an unprecedented challenge to develop what is arguably "the most unique, innovative, and diverse culture that Jews have ever known."

Minor in Jewish American Studies

The Jewish American Studies Minor examines the nature of the relationship over time between the Jewish community and the emerging American nation and the contributions to American culture, institutions, and intellectual traditions made by Jewish heritage, arts, religion, language, sciences, values and most importantly, by people of Jewish heritage themselves.

The Minor is taught by distinguished faculty from Montclair State University's departments of philosophy and religion, history, political science and law, anthropology, and sociology. It draws upon New York and Tri-State area as both primary resource and laboratory to develop a cultural, religious, social, and historical perspective of past and present experiences of the Jewish people and to examine current developments that impact upon the life and progress of Jews in American society. The program furthers Montclair's mission to enhance its students' global awareness and build on it cultural diversity.

Jewish American Studies is a rigorous but flexible multidisciplinary academic program designed to complement any undergraduate major at Montclair State. The program is designed for students of any ethnic or religious background.