Yidishe Nachas: A Glance at the Jewish Mother
3 Pages Posted: 23 Jan 2012 Last revised: 26 Jan 2012
Date Written: January 20, 2012
“Yidishe Nachas,” is an essay about the American Jewish mother and her unique relationship between her children in an ever-changing cultural dynamic that seemed to not only challenge, but maximize her intrinsic motherhood qualities. Jenna Weissman Joselit, the author of this essay, rejects the claim by cultural anthropologists who believe that the behavior of the Jewish mother to smother her children with excessive affection is rooted in “centuries of persecution and tension.” In fact, Joselit goes as far as to explain how Jewish mothers struggled to synthesize both American culture with their own traditional values and concerns. Thus, this analysis will briefly point out what Joselit meant by her statement that the cultural anthropologists “mistook a specific cultural moment for a millenial tradition." In addition, an overview of the material that supports Joselit argument will also be presented.
Keywords: Mothers, Jewish Mothers, Jew, Jewish, American, Cultural Anthropologists
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