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A Jewish Life on Three ContinentsThe Memoir of Menachem Mendel Frieden$
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Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780804783637

Published to Stanford Scholarship Online: September 2014

DOI: 10.11126/stanford/9780804783637.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM STANFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.stanford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Stanford University Press, 2019. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in SSO for personal use.date: 17 October 2019

America

America

Chapter:
(p.223) America
Source:
A Jewish Life on Three Continents
Author(s):

Lee Shai Weissbach

Publisher:
Stanford University Press
DOI:10.11126/stanford/9780804783637.003.0012

This chapter provides a firsthand account of an East European immigrant’s initial encounter with America and of his early years in the country. Even though the account is filtered through the consciousness of a Zionist pioneer in the Land of Israel, it nonetheless paints a vivid picture of a newcomer’s encounter with the United States early in the twentieth century. Many of his trials and tribulations were shared by tens of thousands of other immigrants as well: the peddling in the countryside, the struggle to get a start in business, the migration from one place to another and from one job to another, the not uncommon confrontation with personal tragedy, and, more generally, the encounter with new cultural realities. In this regard, Frieden’s initial reaction to African Americans and his adoption of the prevailing attitudes of white society are especially revealing, as is his first experience with anti-semitism.

Keywords:   immigration to America, peddling, entrepreneurship, African Americans, anti-semitism, death in childbirth, Norfolk, Saint Paul

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