Page 133 - Jewish Book Annual Volume 25

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113
P o s t a l
—JWB ’s
R o l e i n C u l t u r a l L i f e
programs are held throughout the country under the auspices
of synagogues, Centers, Hillel Foundations, orchestras, univer-
sities, choral groups and radio and TV stations. A fixed date in
the Jewish cultural calendar, Jewish Music Festival has become
a decisive force in making Jews aware of the wonderful cultural
treasure of Jewish music
Stimulation of Cultural Publications
The expansion in the number and quality of Jewish cultural
programs conducted by Centers as they became instruments of
the entire Jewish community was one of the most striking mani-
festations of the changing character of the Center. The publica-
tions of JWB, which have contributed to the building of an
American Jewish culture for over a generation, helped bring
about this change. Of the 369 publications in JWB’s 1966 cata-
l°g» 1^8 deal with some aspect of the Jewish heritage—Jewish
literature, music, art, dance, drama and the cultural arts in gen-
eral, as well as the Jewish holidays, Jewish education, Jewish
history, Judaism, Jewish values, Israel, world Jewry and contem-
porary issues in Jewish life.
Because the American Jewish community as a whole has found
that JWB publications serve its cultural needs, orders pour in
not only from Jewish Community Centers, but also from syna-
gogues, Jewish schools, Jewish camps, federations, Hillel Foun-
dations, bureaus of Jewish education, and women’s organizations.
Among the most widely used JWB cultural program materials
were its programs related to the Peretz and Sholom Aleichem
anniversaries, a Jewish songster which has become a best-seller,
a syllabus on American Jewish literature, a resource guide to
programming for the 20th anniversary of the Warsaw Ghetto
Revolt, a Jewish folk dance book and a guide to the incorpora-
tion of Jewish art in Center buildings.
During the American Jewish Tercentenary celebration in 1954,
JWB’s resources were extensively utilized in the preparation of
cultural materials needed for the observance of this major land-
mark in American Jewish history.
For its golden jubilee celebration JWB commissioned new
Jewish cultural materials, including a cantata, and a reader and
discussion guide on 14 vital issues in American Jewish life dis-
cussed by more than 50 eminent Jewish thinkers. A nationwide
contest to foster the writing of one-act plays in English depict-
ing any aspect of Jewish life, history or folklore was another
anniversary project. A growing number of Centers also sponsor
suck contests locally and give awards to eminent authors.