Journal Article

Contemporary Anglo-Jewish Community Leadership: Coping with Multiculturalism

Published 1 January 2012 / By Ben Gidley, Keith Kahn-Harris

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In this article, drawing on qualitative interviews and documentary analysis, we argue that the Jewish community in Britain has undergone a fundamental shift since 1990 from a ‘strategy of security’, a strategy of communal leadership based on emphasizing the secure British citizenship and belonging of the UK’s Jews, to a ‘strategy of insecurity’, where the communal leadership instead stresses an excess of security among Anglo-Jewry. We demonstrate this based on two case studies: of the Jewish renewal movement in the 1990s and the ‘new anti-semitism’ phenomenon of the 2000s.We conclude that this shift is tied to the shift from a monocultural Britain to an officially multicultural one, and that therefore there are lessons that can be taken from it for the study of British and other multiculturalisms.

Gidley, B. and Kahn-Harris, K. (2012) 'Contemporary Anglo-Jewish Community Leadership: Coping with Multiculturalism', The British Journal of Sociology, 63(1): 168–187