Remember the glorious days when your parents dropped you off at camp and you could reinvent yourself free of expectations, revel in your newfound independence and stay up all night whispering with your bunkmates?
Or perhaps you didn’t experience this quintessentially Jewish rite of passage . . . but wish that you had.
Fun, however, was not the intention of the founders of the Jewish camp movement. They were focused on helping immigrant children escape sweltering urban neighborhoods and, later, became obsessed with creating bulwarks against over-assimilation. Camps wound up providing a two-month bubble that was like a trip to Jewish Neverland almost accidentally.
In her fascinating new book, The Jews of Summer, Sandra Fox explores both the institution and the experience of camp, providing an unexpected window into the evolution of the American Jewish community.
A visiting Assistant Professor of Hebrew Judaic Studies and Director of the Archive of the Jewish Left Project at NYU, Sandra is the founder and executive producer of the Yiddish-language podcast Vaybertaytsh.
Tuesday, March 26, 2024 | 11:30 AM Eastern