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November 04, 1966 - Image 6

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1966-11-04

Disclaimer: Computer generated plain text may have errors. Read more about this.

Jewish Museum's Lower East Side Exhibit

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NATHAN R. EPSTEIN
JACK BECKWITH
HARRY J. GOLDBERG
SAUL KATZ
GEORGE GRAY
HARRY BRODSKY
CHARLES CANVASSER
NATHAN P. ROSSEN
MAX SOSIN
MAURICE MARRICR
NORMAN COTTLER
42V HERMAN
WILLIAM BENDEROFF
BEN GOLDBERG
JOSEPH LEE
EUGENE EPSTEIN
HAROLD KOZLOFF
MORRIS SUKENIC
SAMUEL H. BELKIN
HARRY BERLIN
ROBERT BERMAN
HAROLD BEZNOS
TOM BORMAN
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MOE EGREN
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IRWIN GREEN
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FRANK HOLTZMAN
BEN JACOB
SAMUEL S. JANNETT
IRA KAUFMAN
BERNARD KOZLOFF
WILLIAM MAY
MAX ROSENFELD
JULIE R. SANDLER
SID SCHWARTZ
SAMUEL SIMMER
DAVID L. SKY
RONALD SLOAN
CARMI M. SLOMOVITZ
GEORGE SPOON
ALLEN WALKER
ALVIN WASSERMAN
MORRIS WERNEY
ALBERT WINNICK

.

or you may write
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City of Hope
5337 Vermont, Detroit

(Continued from Page 1)

the time under review as well as
by present-day analysts—including
quotations from the works of Irving
Howe, Mil t o n Hindus, Jacob
Epstein, Abraham Cahan, Morris
Raphael Cohen, William Dean
Howells, Van Wyck Brooks, Lin-
coln Steffens, William Knight,
Charles Reznikoff, Hutchins Hap-
good, Maurice Hindus, Henry Roth,
Anzia Yezierska. There is a sum-
marized analysis of the catalogue
by Cynthia Jaffee.

A brief movie of the time

under review is shown during
the exhibit, constantly. And
there is a special feature—Zero
Mostel reads letters, in Yiddish,
-from the Jewish Daily Forward
"Bintel Brief" and translates
them. That part of the exhibit
alone is worth a trip to New
York to see the exhibition —
and the entire display is a great
product of our time.

The focus of the epic chapter
of American Jewish history is the
mass settlement of Jews from
Eastern Europe, which started in
1870 and continued until the end
of the second decade in this cen-
tury. The life of these immigrants
as portrayed was on the Lower
East Side, in the area bounded by
Brooklyn Bridge on the south, 14th
Street on the north, Broadway on
the west and East River on the
east. The more than 150 enlarge-
ments of photographs in the exhibit
are by Byron, Riis, Hine and
others. Every available source was
utilized to dramatize the period.
Included in the exhibition are
drawings by Jacob Epstein in
which he documented his youth on
the East Side; George Bellows'
"Cliff Dwellers," an impressive
comment upon the crowded living
conditions in New York's slums;
George Luks' two major works
which give an intimate view of the
life of this area, "Hester Street" and
"The Spielers," and John Sloan's
"Wet Night on the Bowery" and
"Recruiting Union Square." There
are works by Glenn Coleman,
Louis Elshimius, William Gropper,
William Glackens, Chaim Gross,
Childe Hassam, Edward Hopper,
Jerome Myers, Maurice Prender-
gast, Frederick Remington, Moses
Soyer, Raphael Soyer, Joseph Stel-
la, Charles Ulrich, Abraham Walk-
owitz and Max Weber.
- Deeply moving are the displays

showing how, in the years under
review, child labor still was ex-
tant, how very young boys of 10
or younger were loaded with
parcels which they were deliver.
ing on errands at special jobs
provided for them.
Then there is the display de-

picting the Triangle Fire tragedy,
with Yiddish newspaper and other
reproductions showing the horror
that resulted from the sweatshops'
failure to provide protection for
workers and the sufferings of be-
reaved families.
In his introduction to the exhi-
bition catalogue Allon Schoener
states:
"The Lower East Side was a
creative crucible. It gave birth to
such famous artists, entertainers,
politicians and businessmen as
Irving Berlin, Eddie Cantor, Jim-
my Durante, Jacob Epstein, Jacob
Javits, David Sarnoff and Al
Smith. A rich heritage of aspira-
tion and achievement belongs to
everyone associated with the Low-
er East Side. Immigrants became
sweatshop workers and small shop
keepers. Economic opportunities
permitted many of them and their
children to become successful bus-
tellectuals. The Lower East Side
tellictuals. The Lower East Side
was an open-end ghetto; it was a
stopping-off place — where you
lived until you could afford to
move to Harlem, the Upper East
Side, the Upper West Side, the
Bronx, Brooklyn, or out of town.
Getting out was the hallmark of
success.
"Jewish life on the Lower East
Side is the principle concern of
this exhibition. Other nationali-
ties — Chinese, Italians, and Irish
— also have their roots in the
Lower East Side. Although Jews
spread throughout the entire geo-
graphical area, they tended to con-
centrate between East Broadway

and Houston Street. The Lower
East Side of today is not the Lower
East Side of Yesterday. It is still
Jewish community where thou-
sands of Jews live in large new
cooperative apartment buildings
surrounded by trees and grass.
The miserable old tenements have
been inherited by the Puerto Ri-
cans — New York's newest immi-
grants. Low rents have attracted

avant-garde artists and writers;
they have made the Lower East
Side of today — The East Village
— their territory."
There is no doubt about it: the
Jewish Museum's current exhibi-
tion is one of the very great
artistic achievements of our time.
We repeat: it is worth a trip to
New York to see it.
—P.S.

=Death of God' Theology Gets
Support of Rabbi at U-31 Parley

A "post-Christian and post-Jew-
ish paganism" was proposed by a
Jewish theologian as his own ver-
sion of the "death of God" issue
at a conference of Protestant think-
ers on the University of Michigan
campus last week.
Rabbi Richard L. Rubenstein,
professor at the University of
Pittsburgh, told some 60 Protes-
tants that "After Auschwitz I find
I must reject a transcendent God
entirely. God is where we come
from and where we go, but he is
just not involved in the world in
any way."
The Protestant "death of God"
theologians say that God is no
longer part of human experience
and instead center their theology
on the figure of Jesus.

Rabbi Rubenstein, f o r m e r
spiritual leader of synagogues in
Brockton and Natick, Mass., is
a graduate of the Jewish Theo-
logical Seminary and the Har-
vard Divinity School. _

He said that modern Jewish so•
ciety has become "pagan in fact
though not in name. Like pagans,
we use the myth, the traditions
and the liturgy of our people to
share a tragic and an absurd
human destiny rather than to over-
come it by reliance on God," he
said.
Therefore, R a b b i Rubenstein
called for a more intense liturgical
life in the synagogue. "When a
child reaches the age when he's
ready for a Sunday school, parents
don't stop and ask whether they
believe in God or not," he said.
"Religion is the way in which
we celebrate the seasons of life.
It is the life we share in the Jew-
ish community, the way we share
the crises of life."

Later, in New York, Rabbi Ira
Eisenstein, president of the Jew-

ish Reconstructionist Foundation,
criticized Rabbi Rubenstein's
statements.
When the "death of God" theo-

logians say that "our concern is
not with the next world but totally
with this one," Rabbi Eisenstein
declared, "they are properly re-
jecting the other-worldliness which,
for generations, distracted men
from attempting to improve this
world and to abolish poverty, in-
equality and war. But this requires
not paganism which was entirely
dependent upon appeasing the
gods, but dedication and faith in
the potentialities of the human
spirit."
Some 500 persons attended the
dinner, which was also addressed
by Rabbi Mordecai Kaplan, founder
of the Reconstructionist movement.

Israeli Company Wins
$140,000,000 Contract

TEL AVIV (JTA) — Vered, the
Israeli planning and construction
company, has won a $140,000,000
contract to b u i l d a 160-foot-high
dam south of Shiraz in Iran. Vered
won the contract in competition
with French, Italian and other for-
eign bidders.

THE DETROIT JEWISH NEWS
6—Friday, November 4, 1966

Council Prepares
Candidates' Memo

In the interest of informing
Council affiliates and their mem-
bers of the views of Michigan can-
didates for public office, the Jew-
ish Community Council developed
and mailed, during the past few
weeks, a candidate questionnaire
designed as a basis for personal
interviews and/or communication
with those seeking gubernatorial
or legislative elective office.
The questionnaire, which was
prepared under the direction of
Archie Katcher, chairman of the
Council's legislative subcommitte
relates to areas of primary Jet
ish communal concern and Coun-
cil involvement. Candidates were
asked to respond to questions con-
cerning their views on civil rights,
treatment of Soviet Jewry, church-
state relations, and, in the case
of aspirants for national office, on
the United Nations Human Rights
treaties and Middle East devel-
opments.
Delegates of Council-affiliated
organizations, rabbis and members
of Council committees, were in-
formed by Dr. Samuel Krohn,
Council president, that due to the
volume of responses to the ques-
tionnaire which were received, it
was impossible to distribute the
information through the mail. He
added that those persons interested
in knowing the responses of any
candidate may obtain the informa-
tion by calling Kushner at the
Council office, WO 2-6710.

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