Title

Navigating Rough Waters: Alexander Kohut and the Hungarian Roots of Conservative Judaism

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

2008

Journal

AJS Review

Volume

32

Issue

1

First Page

49

Last Page

78

URL with Digital Object Identifier

http://dx.doi.org/10.1017/S0364009408000032

Abstract

With these words, Alexander Kohut engaged the radical Reform stance of Kaufman Kohler in the spring of 1885. The exchange with Kohler crystallized Kohut's raison d'être for Conservative Judaism: an authentic alternative to what he termed “stupid Orthodoxy and insane Reform.” Kohut articulated a fully developed version of this view in Ethics of the Fathers, a compilation of his polemics against Kohler that he published a few months later. This earned Kohut a place among the Conservative movement's pantheon of nineteenth-century founders, along with Sabato Morais, Benjamin Szold, and Marcus Jastrow.

Notes

Dr. Howard Lupovitch is currently a faculty member at The University of Western Ontario.