Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
A Club of Their Own – Jewish Humorists and the Contemporary World - Oxford Scholarship Online
Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content.

A Club of Their Own: Jewish Humorists and the Contemporary World

Eli Lederhendler and Gabriel N. Finder


This book bases its title on a joke by Groucho Marx who said (approximately, accounts differ) “I don’t want to belong to any club that will accept me as a member”—a line that encapsulates one of the most important characteristics of Jewish humor: the desire to distance oneself from a group to which one feels superior and in this way to forge a path to emotional freedom. By studying the history and development of Jewish humor, the chapters in this book provide nuanced accounts of how Jewish humor can be described, but also makes a case for the importance of humor in studying any culture. A rece ... More

Keywords: Jewish humor, emotional freedom, American Jews, sense of humor, American Jewish masculinity, Jewish women, Israel

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2016 Print ISBN-13: 9780190646127
Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2016 DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780190646127.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Eli Lederhendler, editor
Professor of Jewish History and Contemporary Jewry; Head of the School of History, Faculty of the Humanities, Hebrew University

Gabriel N. Finder, editor
Associate Professor and Ida and Nathan Kolodiz Director of Jewish Studies, University of Virginia

Show Summary Details

subscribe or login to access all content.



Symposium: A Club of Their Own: Jewish Humorists and the Contemporary World

“The Right Mélange”

Steven Beller

Purim on Pesach

Edward Portnoy

Jackie Mason

Stephen J. Whitfield, (Brandeis University)

Decoding Seinfeld’s Jewishness

Jarrod Tanny, (University of North Carolina Wilmington)


Carol Zemel, (York University)

Humor and Russian Jewish Identity

Anna Shternshis, (University of Toronto)

“Laughter through Tears”

Avinoam Patt, (University of Hartford)

And Hannah Laughed

Kerstin Steitz, (Old Dominion University)

An Irony of History

Gabriel N. Finder, (University of Virginia)

The “Tsadik from Plonsk” and “Goldenyu”

Diego Rotman, (The Hebrew University)

Humor and Ethnicity on Israeli Television

Limor Shifman, (The Hebrew University)

From Monsters to Pop Icons

Asal Dardan, (Lund University)

Making Out in Anne Frank’s Attic

David Slucki, (College of Charleston)


In Memoriam

Richard I. Cohen

Review Essay

The New Marranos

Olga Litvak

Book Reviews

Antisemitism, Holocaust, and Genocide

Cultural Studies

History and Biography

Zionism, Israel, and the Middle East