Date of this Version
The Jewish Quarterly Review
John Efron's new book pursues two scholarly trajectories simultaneously. On the one hand, it offers a history of Jewish physicians and medical practice in Germany from the Middle Ages until the Holocaust period. On the other hand, it examines the uses of medicine and medical discourse to bolster or undermine political, racial, and national agendas, both Jewish and antisemitic, in the modern era. Although Efron seeks to link these two subjects as one, they do not mesh as organically as he intends. Moreover, while the second trajectory is generally well-conceived and well-argued, making a genuine contribution to modern Jewish cultural history, the first is more sketchy and uneven, and is clearly less accomplished.
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Ruderman, D. B. (2002). Review of John M. Efron, Medicine and the German Jews: A History. The Jewish Quarterly Review, 92 (3-4), 638-643. http://dx.doi.org/10.1353/jqr.2002.0033
Date Posted: 02 August 2017
This document has been peer reviewed.