framed what they eventually called Orthodox Judaism, integrationistrnpolitically but separate religiously in the many aspects ofrnculture subject to the Torah’s commandments. A few remainedrnJewish without practicing Judaism (yielding the counterpartrnto religious Judaism in secular Jewishness). But a greatrnmany opted out. They are represented by Felix Mendelssohn’srnfather, Karl Marx’s father, and Disraeli’s father, among thernman) Jews who purchased Christianity as their ticket to Westernrncivilization. In other words, they adopted the Christianityrnthat ruled in the country of their citizenship (just as, after thernmassacres of World War II, numerous Jews cut off all tics notrnonly to Judaism but to the Jewish group). So until neady thern20th century, to be a Jew meant to practice Judaism, and torncease to practice Judaism meant to stop being a Jew. If Spinozarnreally was the first secular Jew, it took a long time to produce arnsecond.rnOnly toward the end of the 19th century did large numbersrnof European Jews drop Judaism but remain Jewish. Many ofrnthese lived in the ethnic mosaics of Central and Eastern Europernwhere large populations of diverse tradition lived side-bysidernbut interacted as foreigners. To be a Jew meant to speakrnYiddish, to dress in Jewish clothing, to make a living in callingsrndeemed distinctly Jewish, and, above all, to define the worid inrna way particular to the Jewish group. To be a Pole or Ukrainianrnor a Latvian or a Rumanian or a Hungarian bore the same socialrnmeanings. In a given city, natives might speak several languages,rndepending on origin, and points of encounter outsidernthe circle of faith and culture were scvcrelv circumscribed. Asrnfar to the west as Britain, people took for granted that one couldrnbe English or Jewish by birth or marriage, but not both. In thernUnited States today we should call such a definition of culturernethnic tribalization, but in Canada ethnicity as a medium ofrnsocial differentiation is publicly subsidized.rnIt was in that context that Jews who lost the faith sought arnsecular definition of who is a Jew and what is “Jewishness.” ArnPole of the Jewish persuasion, or an authentic German of thernMosaic persuasion, so far as other Poles or Germans were concerned,rnwas no more plausible than a flying cow. Nor did Jewsrnthemselves believe it, though in Germany, France, Britain, andrnthe Unites States, many tried. That left the secular option,rnJewishness. In response to the antireligious propaganda of thernEnlightenment and the militant secularism of socialism, communism,rnand some formulations of liberalism, large numbers ofrnJews exercised that option.rnFor some, the Jewish group would be recast as “a people, onernpeople,” which should, and ultimately did, attain a politicalrndefinition for itself as a nation; specifically, Zionists thoughtrnup and realized the state of Israel. For others, the Jews wouldrnform a language-community, with Yiddish and renewed Hebrewrncompeting to define matters. For Jewish socialists (as distinctrnfrom Jews who left the Jewish worid and became socialistsrnor communists), the Jews would form a division in the unitedrnarmy of the international workers of the worid; these formedrnYiddish-speaking unions of enormous influence. Zionism andrnthe Jewish Works Union, or Bund, took shape in the same year,rn1897, and in Eastern Europe the latter became, after the religion,rnJudaism, the single most influential form of “being Jewish.”rnAnd for some few in Europe, but a great many a centuryrnlater in the United States, the Jewish group would form a culturalrnentity, redefining their religious practices into culturalrnforms, turning commandments of God into customs and ceremonies.rnAmerican Jews for the first 200 of their 350 years of history inrnthe United States took for granted that their principal institutionalrnform would be the synagogue, and that they were Jewishrnby reason of practicing Judaism. As their communities tookrnshape in colonial times, these Jews constructed synagogues,rncemeteries, and schools. They had no ordained rabbis for thosernsame 200 years (the first rabbinical schools were founded in thernfinal quarter of the 19th century), but educated lay peoplernmanaged well enough. When a large migration of GermanrnJews in the mid-19th century redefined the demography ofrnAmerican Jewry, the immigrants affirmed that they formed arnreligious group and built synagogues, reshaping the faith to accommodaternthe requirements of American society. En masse,rnthe’ opted for Reform Judaism, which they assumed would bernthe Judaism of America. History proved them right—today approximatelyrn90 percent of those Jews who belong to synagoguesrnidentify with Reform Temples or Conservative synagogues.rnThe mass migrations from Russian and German and Austro-rnHungarian Poland, White Russia, I’kraine, Rumania, Hungary,rnand other parts of Central and Eastern Europe from 1880rnthrough 1920 changed the face of American Jewry. Far morernnumerous than the existing community, the immigrants werernalso remarkably diverse. They included not only practicingrnJews but atheists, Zionists and Socialists and Zionist-Socialists,rnHebraists and Yiddishists, and a great many other sorts of Jewsrnthen flourishing in the heartland of Eastern Europe. There, allrnof the ambiguities and complexities of the modern identitvcrisisrnaffecting Jewry found their avatars, from the pure piety ofrnthe faithful—whether in Hasidic circles around a holy man orrnin yeshivas poring over the Talmud—to the utter, militant atheismrnof the Jewish socialists and communists. Some were highlyrneducated in their faith or articulate in their atheism, butrnmost practiced a residual, cultural piety, taking for granted thatrnto be a Jew meant to practice Judaism but bearing only a lightrnburden of religious knowledge to lend sense to religious practice.rnThe immigrants created a native American Judaism that definedrnitself as a religious group with social commitments, norndifferent from the Mormons or the Catholics. They veryrnquickly extended the definition to encompass ethnicity withoutrnreligion, despite religion, and alongside religion. But no onernimagined Jewish ethnicity as a purely individual and private attitude;rneveryone took for granted that the Jews formed a socialrnentity, a group, differing only on what that group should makernof itself. Now the characteristic form of American Jewry, thernsynagogue, competed with a variety of other institutional arrangementsrndesigned to Americanize the immigrants. Jewishorganizedrnunions in various industries, needle trades for instance,rnespoused a socialism that defined public discourse andrnthat was far more aggressive and articulate than the barely literaternJudaic theology of the immigrants. An intellectually maturernand highly educated Orthodox Judaism developed veryrnslowly, its principal institutions, yeshivas for instance, rare andrnweak, its synagogues small and lacking stability, its rabbis poorlyrntreated. Only after Worid War II, v’ith a large-scale immigrationrnof European survivors of the holocaust from Centralrnand Eastern Europe, did Orthodoxy renew itself. Then the issuernof accommodating American society gave way to other concernsrnaltogether, and several Orthodox Judaisms, some Hasidic,rnsome centered in the great academic societies of the yeshira tradition,rnall of them segregationist to the core, competed with thern22/CHRONlCLESrnrnrn