Strange times to be a jew: Themes of whiteness, identity, and sanctuary in the imagined jewish utopias of grand island and sitka

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

Abstract

This chapter examines utopian visions of nineteenth-century politician Mordecai Noah, who proposed that Grand Island in New York would become a gathering point for world Jewry, and contemporary author Michael Chabon, whose novel The Yiddish Policemen’s Union envisioned Sitka, Alaska, as a safe haven for Jews fleeing attacks on Israel. Noah and Chabon offered utopian alternatives to American assimilation—imagining Jewish utopias that fostered ethnic identity while allowing Jewish engagement in American culture. By expressing this eutopian possibility, Noah’s Ararat and Chabon’s Sitka mirror the concern of individual Jews from the nineteenth century to the present.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationRace and Utopian Desire in American Literature and Society
PublisherPalgrave Macmillan
Pages81-100
Number of pages20
ISBN (Electronic)9783030194703
ISBN (Print)9783030194697
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 2019

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Social Sciences(all)
  • Arts and Humanities(all)

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