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Looking for a good book on Conservative Judaism?
Conservative Judaism in America began as a reaction. There were several efforts in the 1800s to unite all Jews in America, which explains why many of the institutions created then have such nondenominational names. (Take, for example, Reform Judaism's Central Conference of American Rabbis, or its congregational arm, the Union of American Hebrew Congregations; on the Conservative side, how about the Rabbinical Assembly or the United Synagogue of America?) But these efforts, already straining, came to a quick halt with the famous "treif banquet" .
The Conservative movement chose the middle ground between Reform, which it felt went too far toward assimilation, and Orthodoxy, which it felt mistakenly had frozen halacha (Jewish law) instead of adapting it to modern times. Speaking sociologically, the Conservative movement aimed to serve the immigrants and children of immigrants from Eastern Europe who wanted a mostly traditional service, mostly in Hebrew, but in a comfortable, suburban style. Postwar Conservative Judaism grew rapidly, and many synagogues built in that period are large buildings with many kinds of facilities ("shuls with pools") in order to offer something for everyone.
In Israel, the Conservative movement is known as Masorti, which means traditional...not to be confused with the Traditional movement that broke away from the Conservative movement when the latter began admitting women to rabbinical school.
The books shown below include books of Conservative Jewish theology and practice, histories of Conservative Judaism, some publications of the Conservative movement and its rabbinical school, the Jewish Theological Seminary, and the new Conservative commentary on the Torah, Etz Hayim.
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