Ritual Variation among Modern Orthodox Jews in the United States
Publication Date: January 1986
Publisher(s): Oxford University Press
Special Collection: Berman Jewish Policy Archive
Keywords: American Jews; Religious denominations; Identity formation
Coverage: United States
In Studies in Contemporary Jewry 2, 164-187. The essential lesson to be derived from this discussion of ritual variation within modern Orthodoxy is that religious/symbolic issues, communal ties, and social factors all play important roles in determining ritual performance. Thus modern centrist Orthodox Jews are not a world apart but rather similar to other American Jews in their desire to be both Jewish and American, parochial and cosmopolitan, particular and universal. Ritual practices which inhibit integration and are perceived to be of low religious / symbolic importance are less likely to be undertaken and even the observance of important mitzvahs shows some effects of cultural dualism.