Page 97 - Jewish Book Annual Volume 48

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IDA COHEN SELAVAN
A Survey of Bibliographies ofJewish
Interest, 1980-1990
t h e
d r a m a t i c
in c r e a s e
o f interest in Jewish Studies in the Unit­
ed States and Canada which occurred in the sixties rose to a
peak du ring the decade o f the seventies. Jewish studies p ro ­
grams and departm en ts proliferated in colleges and universi­
ties, as did programs for study in Israel. Although the rate o f
growth decreased du ring the eighties, some programs became
full fledged departm en ts and offered graduate degrees. Stu­
dents wrote theses on various areas o f Jewish interest and pub ­
lished articles in journals. Many theses were subsequently pub ­
lished as monographs.
Along with these new writers, established scholars continued
to do research and publish. Some areas o f Jewish interest, not
well documented in the seventies, became popu lar in the
eighties, e.g., genealogy, Sephardic studies, women, Black-
Jewish relations, and bio-ethics. The greatest area o f growth
was in books and articles on the Holocaust, on both scholarly
and popu lar levels, especially those geared to educational set­
tings.
It is not only scholars who read books o f Jewish interest. Jews
buy more books pe r capita than any o ther ethnic group , and
publishers have begun to recognize this fact. University presses
and trade publishers have jo ined the specialized Jewish pub ­
lishing houses in producing hund reds o f books o f Jewish in­
terest, fiction and non-fiction, adult and juvenile, in the past
decade.
Bibliographies o f books in areas o f Jewish interest have been
published for many decades, bu t the decade o f the eighties was
one o f unp receden ted flowering, due largely to the new tech­
nology. Many o f these bibliographies were composed on and
processed and p rin ted by computers. The typography in these