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Jews and Fundamentalism

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Publication Date: January 2005

Publisher(s): Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs

Author(s): Samuel C. Heilman

Series: Jewish Political Studies Review, 17:1-2

Special Collection: Berman Jewish Policy Archive

Topic: Culture and religion (Religion and religious groups)

Keywords: Culture; Educators; Haredi (ultra-Orthodox) Judaism; Jewish Outreach

Type: Report


The author posits two categories of fundamentalist Haredi (ultra-Orthodox) Judaism: active and quiescent (passive). The former category includes Chabad and the religious Israeli settlers; the latter includes the yeshiva-centered Jewish enclaves. The author discusses the recent decline of non-fundamentalist Modern Orthodoxy, tracing the trend to factors including: the perceived decline of American culture since the 1960s; the increasing predominance of Haredi teachers and rabbis in Jewish day schools; and the influence of Israeli Haredi yeshivas and seminaries at which American Orthodox high school graduates spend a gap year studying.