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Name-Changing-and What It Gets You:
Twenty-Five Who Did It

- Abstract

Many Jews in the United States like neither their names nor their faces, and many take surgical steps to have them corrected. There are no available statistics on plastic-surgery nose operations. But there are rough statistics on applicants to state courts to change family names: about 50,000 a year. Of these, around 80 per cent are Jews; thus, estimating four persons to a family, 160,000 shed or modify their Jewish cognomens annually.

State courts make little fuss about granting applications for changes of name unless the applicant is a notorious criminal. The process is a simple one. An affidavit swearing to hardship under the burden of the name is attached to an order, the order is submitted to a judge who almost never asks to see the applicant, and the relief is granted.

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