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Book Notes: The Jews of Australia - A Thematic History Vol. I, 1788-1945, Hilary L. Rubinstein

Edgar Samuel

<plain_text><page sequence="1">The Jews of Australia - A Thematic History, Volume I, 1788-1945, Hilary L. Rubinstein (William Heinemann, Australia, 1991) ISBN 0-85561-351-6. 626 pp. It is a common myth in Britain that Australians are the descendants of convicts, whereas in fact very few are. One of the merits of this book is that it gives a very clear demographic history of the Australian Jewish community, showing just how large immigration has been since 1920 and how it was distributed: Australia has been generous in giving a home to many survivors of the Holocaust and to Russian Jews after that. Other themes are the evolution of the Australian Jewish community, 1788-1945; interwar immigration and Australian Jewish communal responses; the foundations of congregational life; assimilation and survival; religion and education; individual achievements; anti-Semitism, philo Semitism and the image of the Jew in Australia; Zionism and Australian Jewry. This is a detailed and interesting study. Edgar Samuel</page></plain_text>