"One People?" is a full-lenth study of the major problem confronting the Jewish future: the availability or otherwise of a way of mending the schisms between Reform and Orthodox Judaism, between religious and secular Jews in Israel and between Israel itself and the diaspora - all of which have been deepended by the continuing controversy over the question "who is a Jew?". This text is a study of the background to this and related controversies. It traces the fragmentation of Jewry in the wake of emancipation and enlightenment, the development of heterodox religious denominations and secular Zionism, the variety of Orthodox responses to these challenges and the resources of Jewish tradition for handling diversity. It sets out the intractability of the problem and ends by examining strands in both Orthodox Jewish thought that might make for convergence and conciliation. The analysis employs a variety of disciplines - history, sociology, theology and halakhic jurisprudence - to comment on a subject in which these dimensions are inextricably interwoven.
It also explores key issues such as the underlying philosophy of Jewish law and the nature of the collision between tradition and modern consciousness in the clash of perceptions between Orthodox and Reform. Written for general readers as well as the academic, this book aims to present a thought-provoking presentation of the dilemmas of Jewish Orthodoxy in modernity.