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West Side Story is considered the pinnacle of the American musical and characterized the new dynamic in the cultural life of America that began in the 1960s. The play, set to music by Leonard Bernstein (1918–1990), about the conflict between Puerto Ricans and Anglo-Americans in New York, embodies the composer’s ideological and artistic values, which resulted from his double affiliation, both American and Jewish. With his socially-committed liberalism, his plea for ethnic and religious tolerance and his striving for a new American music based on the nation’s ethnic variety, Bernstein was exemplary of the second generation of Jewish immigrants to America.

in Encyclopedia of Jewish History and Cultures Online
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Novel by Theodor Herzl, in which the leading proponent of the Zionist movement lays out his vision of a future “Jewish homeland.” Although Altneuland (“Old New Land,” 1941) is the mature expression of his Zionist ideal, the book has always been overshadowed by his original Zionist blueprint, Der Judenstaat (“A Jewish State,” 1896), and dismissed as a “utopian” work. Examination of the work provides enlightening insights into Herzl’s worldview and allows for a new look at the founder of Zionism.

in Encyclopedia of Jewish History and Cultures Online