In The Community: The Vanishing Jews
Seed as the Sand of the Sea?
Some years ago a book called The Vanishing Irish worried about the future of Ireland, but since then the Irish have stopped vanishing. The Jews have not stopped. Erich Rosenthal has told us that our birth rate is so low that the number of Jews in the United States is bound to decrease. Now to the news of loss by infertility he adds the news of loss by intermarriage. The volume of the American Jewish Year Book about to appear features a study by him showing that the rate of Jewish intermarriage is higher than has been generally assumed, and is rising.
Jewish intermarriage, precisely defined, refers to one of two things: a wedding in which either the bridegroom or the bride is not a Jew at the time of the ceremony, or a couple in which either the husband or the wife is not a Jew at the time of the inquiry or census. (If the husband or the wife is a convert to the other’s religion, it is not an intermarriage.) Only about 30 per cent of the children in Jewish intermarriages are raised as Jews or are considered to be Jews by their parents.
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