The Jew in the eruv, the Jew in the suburb: contesting the public face and the private space of British Jewry
Topics: Eruv, Jewish Neighbourhoods, Jewish - Non - Jewish Relations, Jewish Space, Main Topic: Other
Abstract: In recent years, British-Jewish commentators, novelists, film-makers and others have identified and bemoaned the existence and persistence of a very ‘British’ preoccupation with image within the community. That preoccupation, which is grounded in the mentality that Jews in Britain should be neither seen nor heard, can be traced back to the period of mass Jewish immigration (and beyond), and can be identified in debates about Jewish space and place within London and elsewhere. This article explores this long history of image control, from the efforts of the Jewish Dispersion Committee and others to encourage migration from the East End ghetto to the suburbs and provinces, to the very recent, heated debates concerning the construction of an eruv by the Orthodox community in North West London.