Course #







    SUMMER 2020
    All classes are held at the Del Valle Education Center
    "NEW"  Give Me Your Huddled Masses: The Irish, Italian and Jewish Immigration Experience - 6 classes

    Between 1845 and 1925, almost 40 million immigrants came to America, the greatest human migration in history. Pressures of overpopulation, domination by a foreign power, political and religious persecution, economic dislocation, crop failure--all were components in the departure of peoples from their native lands. During this period New York City was a cauldron into which the masses poured from all over Europe. The Irish Catholics were the first ethnic minority to populate the great American cities. Much of their early history set the classic pattern of the newcomer to the urban economy and society.


    In these multi-media presentation we will examine the varied experiences of the “classic” European immigrant groups in adapting to American society.


    Some topics to be dealt with in these multi-media presentations:

    • The Great Irish Potato Famine of 1845-1851 and the “push and pull” theory of mass emigration
    • “ Those races of simians, imbeciles and pickpockets”: Nativist perceptions of the Irish, Italians, and Jews 
    • Rabbi Jacob Joseph and the kosher karubke (meat tax) fiasco in turn-of-the-century Lower East Side
    • From Shanty Irish to Lace-curtain Irish: the role of the Irish-American woman in the mainstreaming of Irish Americans 
    • The Italian mafioso: His function in the Old Country and in the New
    • Irish gangs of the Bowery and the “Draft Riots” of 1863
    • Profiles of Amadeo Pietro Giannini, founder of Bank of America, and Isaias Hellman, founder of Wells Fargo Bank
    • Yidn and Yehudim: The Eastern European Jewish immigrant masses and their complex relationship with the uptown German Jews
    • Boxing as a vehicle for fighting one's way out of the ghetto: Biographical sketches of John L. Sullivan, Benny Leonard, and Tony Canzoneri
    223082 M 6/8-7/6  1-3 pm  ONLINE  Reg $80/Seniors $72  Blady
    "NEW" Extreme Orthodox: Satmar and Central European Chassidism - 3 classes

    Experiencing a population explosion, the ultra-conservative, uncompromising Satmar, with headquarters in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, are today the largest and wealthiest Chassidic community in the world. They do not recognize the State of Israel, maintaining that a Jewish homeland should not exist until the coming of the Messiah.

    Among the topics discussed in these PowerPoint presentations:

    • Sketch of the Early history of Chassidism and a Glossary of Chassidic Terms
    • The Chasam Sofer, fierce opponent of Reform and Modern Orthodoxy, and the beginnings of Extreme Orthodoxy in Central Europe, early 19th century
    • How the Satmar Rebbe was saved from the concentration camps by the Labor Zionist, Israel Kastner
    • Extremists among Extremists: A lust for asceticism among Reb Areleh’s Chassidim in Mea Sha’arim, Jerusalem
    • Only 55 miles from Times Square but it might as well be Planet Yehupetz: Everyday life in Chassidic People’s Republic of Kiryas Yoiel, Monroe County, NY
    • The “Angels” of Williamsburg: Their break with Lubavitch and alignment with Satmar
    • Slugfest: The death of the Satmar Rebbe, and the struggle for succession
    • Ordeals of Satmar “black sheep”


    223084 Th 7/2-7/16 1-3pm ONLINE  Reg $40/Seniors $36  Blady
    "NEW" Jews of the Borderlands: A History of Ukrainian and Crimean Jewry - 3 classes

    In this series of Power Point presentations, we touch upon the following themes:

    • The Crimea as “cradle” of Eastern European Jewry
    • Khazar and Ka’anani Jews in Kievan Rus (circa 1000)
    • The Black Plague Massacres and the Mass Migration of German and Bohemian Jews to Ukraine (1350)
    • The Arendar: Economic and Social Life of the Ukrainian shtetl Jew
    • "Abyss of Despair": Ukrainian Jewry and the Cossack Pogroms (circa 1650)
    • Profiles of the some great Chassidic masters: The Ba’al Shem Tov, Levi Yitzchak of Berdichev, Nachman of Breslov, and the Rebbes of Skvir
    • Chafing under the Czars: Jews in the Ukrainian Pale of Settlement
    • Tatar Krimchak and Karaite Jews of the Crimea
    • Ukrainian Jewry under Bolsheviks, Anarchists and White Guardists
    • The Babi Yar Massacre
    • Natan and Avital Sharanski and the Refusenik movement of the 1970s
    • Ukrainian Jewry in recent times
    223086 TU 6/16-7/7 1-3 pm ONLINE  Reg $40/Seniors $36  Blady
    --------------- ---------- -------------------- --------------------- ---------------- -------------------------------------- ----------