What We Know and What We Need to Know about the Status of Jewish Social Research


Publication Date: March 1978

Publisher: Jewish Communal Service Association of North America

Author(s): Daniel J. Elazar

Research Area: Culture and religion; Social conditions

Keywords: Academic Research; Demography; Jewish Organizations

Type: Report

Coverage: United States


Jews in general tend to be mavens. For mavens by their very nature research is usually something unnecessary. If you are a maven you already know all the answers and paying somebody to write them down in a monograph or with statistics does not seem to make much sense. The problem of anybody engaged in Jewish social research is that he has to convince mavens that there are limits to mavenology. I believe that the Jewish community has just reached the point where it is possible to demonstrate properly that there are such limits. The reason that the Jewish community today has reached that point has to do with the character of social research as an enterprise.

In Journal of Jewish Communal Service, v.54 no.3, Spring 1978.