Page 79 - Jewish Book Annual Volume 50

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Jewish Publishing in America in the
Past 50 Years
a n
a t t e m p t
will be made in this article to present an overview
of Jewish book materials in English published in the past half
century in America as reflected in the pages of the Jewish Book
Annual. All types of material will be considered, non-fiction
as well as belles lettres, books on art and literary criticism, history
and biography, mysticism, philosophy and religion and social
sciences. Publications with less than 80 pages, except for poetry
collections, are not included. Neither are materials for children
and juveniles.
The annotated bibliographical listings in the successive annual
volumes of the Jewish Book Annual (hereafter JBA), since its
beginning in 1942, are utilized as basic information, especially
for statistical data. Hence the probability that some titles pub­
lished outside continental America might inadvertently be in­
cluded in the totals. None of the titles listed in the preceding
volumes will be singled out again except for unusual works,
e.g. when a specific title is recognized as basic or pace setting
in scholarly research, or as the latest summation of research
in a given field.
The JBA has gained recognition in publishing circles as a
valuable bibliographic forum since its inception. This accounts
for the fact that large number of books arrive constantly at the
office of the Jewish Book Council with requests for review or
related patterns of publicity. It should be acknowledged that
the annotators for the bibliographies did not always limit their
interests to materials at hand. They might often have researched
books acquired by the major academic centers of Jewish learn­
ing: Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion, Jewish
Theological Seminary of America, and Yeshiva University. Also,