Examining the relationship between Judaism as a religious culture and kibbutz life, this is a ground-breaking work in the research of Judaism. The book takes as its point of departure the historical fact that it was Orthodox pioneers of German origin, in contrast to their Eastern European counterparts, who successfully developed religious kibbutz life. Employing sociological concepts and methods, the author examines the correlations between two evolutionary phases in kibbutz development and two modes of Judaism: the rational Halakhic and the emotive Hassidic modes. In doing this, he explores the relationship between two diverse dispositions towards the divinity - the transcendent and the immanent - and two diverse modes of the self and their related communities. This invative and insightful work will be of essential interest to scholars of the sociology of religion, Jewish studies, modern Jewish history and Israel's national history, and will also interest those more broadly engaged with theology and religious studies.
Professor Aryei Fishman was a member of the Department of Sociology and Anthropology at Bar-Ilan University, Israel, until his retirement. His special interests in the sociologies of religion and communal societies converged in his in-depth study of the religious kibbutz. He is the author of Judaism and Modernization on the Religious Kibbutz, Cambridge University Press, 1992).