Volume 81, Number 16 | September 15 - 21, 2011
West and East Village, Chelsea, Soho, Noho, Little Italy, Chinatown and Lower East Side, Since 1933

Photos by Clayton Patterson

Among the many Lower East Side art luminaries included in the anthology are, clockwise from above, poets Lionel Ziprin and Ira Cohen, poet and Fugs founder Tuli Kupferberg and singer/performer/writer Jennifer Blowdryer.

Kickstarting publication of L.E.S. Jewish anthology

“Jews, A People’s History of the Lower East Side” is a three-volume anthology edited by Clayton Patterson and Dr. Mareleyn Schneider. The first volume addresses the social history of Judaism in the neighborhood. The second and third volumes follow these threads into modern culture, examining contributions to art, business and community in Downtown New York.

Including more than 150 chapters contributed by an international host of writers, these three volumes investigate individuals, movements and institutions that have impacted the city, the country and the entire planet.

Contributors include historians, neighborhood preservationists, artists, rock stars, activists, poets, filmmakers and more. Through their words, familiar subjects and individuals are re-examined, historic moments are considered, and unknown agents of change are brought to light. A sample of some of the chapters:

“Allen Ginsberg’s Ideal Society”

“Architecture of the Jewish Ghetto”

“Barney Rosset: Outsider on the Inside”

“Early Communitarian Experiments on the Lower East Side: Social Reform Practices in New York City During the Gilded Age”

“Emma Goldman – First Slum Goddess of the Lower East Side”

“Jewish Boxing in the Lower East Side”

“June Leaf, Hands at War”

“Public Baths on the Lower East Side”

“Reflections [on Philip Glass]”

“Tuli Kupferberg: The Meaning of the Jew in the Dictionary of Anarchism”

A true people’s history, spanning 200 years, the text allows a huge cross section of thinkers to articulate their experience and knowledge, unfettered by an external narrative.

Conventional publishing schedules would normally separate the release of these three volumes over a number of years. However, a successful Kickstarter campaign will ensure the release of the complete three-volume set within the next 12 months. A small portion of the funds raised will be used to cover preproduction costs (final editing and the creation of an index) but the majority of the money will go to printing.

To make a contribution to the effort to publish this vital anthology, go to Kickstarter.com and search under “Jews, A People’s History of the Lower East Side.”

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