The Logic of Numbers vs. The Logic of Souls: The Synagogue-Center and Jewish Communal Continuity


Publication Date: January 2001

Publisher: Rabbinical Assembly of America; Jewish Theological Seminary of America

Author(s): Ezra Kopelowitz

Research Area: Culture and religion

Keywords: American Jews; Congregations; Jewish organizations

Type: Report

Coverage: United States


In the second half of the 19th century a new religious institution, the "synagogue-center" appeared in the United States. This institution was an ambitious attempt to return Jews to the fold and is a distinctly modern conception of the interface between religion and community. In this essay, I argue that the ironic consequence of the creation of the synagogue-center is the erosion of Jewish communal life.