Three Answers to the Jewish Question: Liberalism, Communism, and Zionism

CJS390H1S - LEC0201


The Jewish Question asks how Jews ought to adapt to the modern world. Seeking answers, Jews formulated competing ideologies and joined social and political movements that, they believed, would help them realize their dreams. This course examines the origins, development, implementation, successes, and failures of the three main secular solutions Jews advocated: liberalism, communism, and Zionism.The liberal, Zionist, and communist dreams succeeded in some respects to live up to the expectations of their advocates. However, like most human endeavours, they failed in other respects, sometimes tragically. It is unlikely that this course will generate compelling answers to the Jewish Question for the 21st century. However, it may raise issues that prompt students to inquire further as they seek their own meaningful values and courses of action.


Exclusions: SOC387H1S.

Prerequisite: 5.0 university courses, at least two of them in the humanities or social sciences OR 1.0 sociology credits at the 200 level or higher

Breadth Requirement: Society and its Institutions (3)

Area of Interest:

  • Jewish History and Social Sciences


Day/Time Instructors Location
W10-12 Robert Brym LM 158