Get A Chosen Calling: Jews in Science in the Twentieth Century PDF

By Noah J. Efron

ISBN-10: 1421413825

ISBN-13: 9781421413822

Students have struggled for many years to provide an explanation for why Jews have succeeded extravagantly in smooth technology. various debatable theories—from such intellects as C. P. Snow, Norbert Wiener, and Nathaniel Weyl—have been promoted. Snow hypothesized an advanced genetic predisposition to medical luck. Wiener advised that the breeding conduct of Jews sustained hereditary features conducive for studying. Economist and eugenicist Weyl attributed Jewish highbrow eminence to "seventeen centuries of breeding for scholars."

Rejecting the concept that Jews have performed good in technology as a result of uniquely Jewish characteristics, Jewish brains, and Jewish behavior of brain, historian of technological know-how Noah J. Efron methods the Jewish affinity for technological know-how in the course of the geographic and cultural situations of Jews who have been pressured to settle in new worlds within the early 20th century.

Seeking reduction from spiritual persecution, hundreds of thousands of Jews resettled within the usa, Palestine, and the Soviet Union, with huge concentrations of settlers in big apple, Tel Aviv, and Moscow. technological know-how performed a wide function within the lives and livelihoods of those immigrants: it used to be a common strength that transcended the arbitrary previous global orders that had lengthy ensured the exclusion of all yet a number of Jews from the seats of energy, wealth, and public esteem. even though the 3 locations have been a ways aside geographically, the hyperlinks one of the groups have been enduring and lively. This shared experience—of dealing with the longer term in new worlds, either actual and conceptual—provided a iteration of Jews with possibilities not like any their mom and dad and grandparents had known.

The tumultuous fresh century of Jewish heritage, which observed either a methodical crusade to blot out Europe's Jews and the inexorable absorption of Western Jews into the societies during which they now dwell, is illuminated by means of where of honor technology held in Jewish imaginations. technology was once critical to their goals of making new worlds—welcoming worlds—for a persecuted people.

This provocative paintings will attract historians of technological know-how in addition to students of faith, Jewish reports, and Zionism.


Noah Efron's a selected Calling is a clean and impressive exploration of the keenness with which Jews have celebrated technology, and of the mythical contrast with which they've got practiced technological know-how in 3 significant domains... Efron exhibits that during all 3 situations, Jews delivered to their novel conditions a force for complete participation in an international the place that they had been denied that participation, and he exhibits, additional, that the universalist ethos of technology supplied a uniquely robust technique of participating.

(David A. Hollinger, college of California, Berkeley)

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Extra info for A Chosen Calling: Jews in Science in the Twentieth Century

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The Jews are] a people who, having imbrued their hands in a most heinous outrage [Jesus’ crucifixion], have thus polluted their souls and are deservedly blind. . Therefore we have nothing in common with that most hostile of people the Jews. We have received from the Savior another way . . our holy religion. . On what subject will that detestable association be competent to form a correct judgment, who after that murder of their Lord . . are led . . by . . ”15 In his homilies, St. John Chrysostom twice alluded to the synagogue as a brothel.

Chrysostom saw in his Jewish neighbors the alleged crimes of all preexisting Jews. ”35 And, like the other Church Fathers, he applied the Christian Testament passages concerning the Jewish involvement in the crucifixion to the Jews of his own day. ”36 Although Chrysostom was critical of many groups, for him as for so many other of the Fathers, the Jews were the ultimate evil. In expounding on his program of hostility, Chrysostom sought to alienate any Catholic feelings of affinity with, or of common humanity toward, the Jews.

Caught in the snare of the devil . . polluted . . ”6 Christians saw denials of the Christological meanings of Scripture in Jewish prayer. ”7 Christians observed that Jews spat when the words “vanity” and “emptiness” were recited. Even though the prayer derived from Isaiah 45:20 and therefore preceded Christianity, Catholic theologians as early as St. 1235) vociferous denial of Jesus’s Messiahship,10 the Talmud, and other Jewish polemical writing. Jews and Christians had to deal with one another socially on a daily basis.

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A Chosen Calling: Jews in Science in the Twentieth Century by Noah J. Efron

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