Another way, another time: an academic response to Chief Rabbi Jonathan Sacks' installation address, a decade of Jewish renewal

Persoff, Meir (2008) Another way, another time: an academic response to Chief Rabbi Jonathan Sacks' installation address, a decade of Jewish renewal. PhD thesis, Middlesex University. [Thesis]

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Faith Against Reason - for the first time in the historiography of Anglo-Jewry - traces the increasingly stormy relationship between the British Chief Rabbinate and an increasingly polarising community, from the founding of the West London Synagogue of British Jews in the 1840s to the end of the incumbency of Immanuel Jakobovits, five Chief Rabbis and 150 years later. It examines the causes and consequences of the Reform 'modifications' and of the opposition to them; the genesis and spread of the subsequent secessionist movements, Liberal and Conservative (Masorti); the reasons
for the growing divisions and dissension within the community; and the results of internal and external influences on all parties to the disputes.

Within that framework, the context statement, Another Way, Another Time, discusses the Chief Rabbinate of Jonathan Henry Sacks, who launched his tenure in 1991 with an inclusivist 'Decade of Jewish Renewal' - seeking to reach out, as he put it in his installation address, 'to every Jew, with open arms and an open heart' - and who, within a few years, was attracting calls, from opponents and supporters, for his
resignation and for the abolition of his office. As will be seen, however, these latter calls date back to the election of Hermann Adler, exactly a century before Sacks' accession, and have pursued each Chief Rabbi from that time on, as his authority and constituency continued to diminish.

First exploring Sacks' early writings and pronouncements on the theme of inclusivism, the paper then demonstrates how, repeatedly, he said 'irreconcilable things to different audiences' and how, in the process, he induced his 'kingmaker' and foremost patron to declare of Anglo-Jewry: 'We are in a time warp, and fast becoming an irrelevance in terms of world Jewry.' Another Way, Another Time contends that the Chief Rabbinate has indeed reached the end of the road and suggests the president of the Board of Deputies of British Jews - a name not unlike that of the first Reform synagogue - as the possible leader of an inclusivist, if not pluralistic, community.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Research Areas: B. > Doctorates by Public Works
Item ID: 13444
Depositing User: Adam Miller
Date Deposited: 13 Jan 2015 15:14
Last Modified: 21 Jun 2021 16:46

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