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date: 25 January 2020

Abstract and Keywords

The Jewish Holy Scriptures have long served as a defining symbol of American Jewish communal life and culture. A copy of the Torah first arrived in what is now New York City in 1655, and ever after the presence of the Jewish scriptures has helped identify and coalesce Jewish communities throughout the colonies and then the United States. American Jewish communities have continued to privilege the first five books of the Bible, but there are twenty-four books in the Hebrew Bible. The Hebrew Bible (and its several American translations) continues to be a mainstay in American Jewish identity, helping give shape and define the character of Jewish adherents and their communities throughout the United States.

Keywords: Hebrew Bible, Israel, Jewish biblical exegesis, Jewish Publication Society, Judaism, Isaac Leeser, Max Margolis, Talmud, Tanakh, Torah

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