Category talk:American Jews

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Category:Jews and Judaism category tree:
Main parent category: Category:Jews and Judaism (by country, place, region, topic.) [Main container category.]
Main sub-category: Category:Jews (by country, place, biographies, lists, categories of individuals.) [Main container sub-category.] Main sub-category: Category:Judaism (by country, place, denominations, religious topics, religious texts, synagogues, yeshivas, schools, rabbis.) [Main container sub-category.] Main sub-category: Category:Jewish history (by country, region, era, all secular topics.) [Main container sub-category.]

separate category for religious jews versus ethinic jews?[edit]

Is there a separate category for religious jews versus ethinic jews? - Tεxτurε 21:33, 23 September 2005 (UTC)

I would like to recommend that if we do not have such a category, that we do create one. Whether someone practices Judaism and whether they are descended from ethnic jews seem to be two different things (which often, but not always go hand in hand). Having one Category doesn't distinguish the different sense in which John Kerry (who has Jewish ancestry but considers himself Catholic) and Madonna (entertainer) (who was born into a Catholic family, but who now is embracing Kabbalah) are each associated with the Jewish heritage. Johntex\talk 21:50, 23 September 2005 (UTC)
It sounds like a risky venture. How are we to know to what extent a dead celebrity (or even a living one) is religious? A lot of people don't like talking about their religious beliefs. --Angr/tɔk tə mi 10:31, 4 October 2005 (UTC)
I agree re: risky venture -- it doesn't seem like a good idea. The religious/ethnic distinction is not indigenous to Judaism, and for many Jews it's hard to split these things out. Of the examples given, John Kerry does not consider himself an ethnic Jew, either and, as for Madonna, she certainly does not practice any religion that could be construed as Jewish. So this does not seem useful. --AnotherBDA 07:47, 25 October 2005 (UTC)

We should definitely split them. I was thinking of maybe even sub-splitting them into "Ashkenazi Jews" and "Sephardic Jews". Howaboutit? Vulturell 08:08, 24 September 2005 (UTC)

I don't think so, for two reasons. One is that American Jews are overwhelmingly Ashkenazi, so it wouldn't solve the problem. The other is that it's hard to know who is Ashkenazi and who Sephardi in many cases -- many have a parent of each, due in part to the first reason -- so it wouldn't be overly practical, either. I concur that some subcategorization would be useful, but this probably isn't it. Maybe by profession (ie why they're famous) -- Jewish American entertainers, Jewish American scientists, etc.? Does a categorization scheme like that already exist that would lend itself easily? --AnotherBDA 07:47, 25 October 2005 (UTC)
To me this category is a big problem. To list someone as a 'jew' in their biography conveys that they are connected if not to religion then at least to a certain community, which in many of these cases is not true. Therefore (as listed below) it does violate the WP:BLP in that "-Category names do not carry disclaimers or modifiers, so the case for the category must be made clear in the article text. The article must state the facts that result in the use of the category tag and these facts must be sourced". To me the test case would seem to be an non-jew whose family were converted (non-ethic) jews (who although hard to find, I suppose would be entirely possible). Perhaps the best categories to split would be "Self identified Jews in America" (or just 'american jews'), and "Americans of Jewish ancestry" ('ancestry' not 'ethnicity' - where many of the people on this page would have to be transfered). Any thoughts??? --Miscreant 00:53, 13 July 2007 (UTC)

category needed?[edit]

As for myself, I am coming from Iraqi extraction, with the other half, my father's family, arriving from India, Bene Israel and Cochini. Now you tell me where I fit in this category of yours? Belarusia?! Or perhaps I'm not important enough. Or perhaps we've simply forgotten already that we are a civilization, a people, and not just some collection of disparate colors. It would be VERY nice if I can feel like I belong to my own people for once in America, as opposed to having to escape to Israel where at least we pretend to recognize each other. (talk) 23:44, 13 July 2008 (UTC)

I agree! Any breakdown by ethnicity is insulting, dangerous and goes against a lot of shameful racial discrimination. Our world continues to be subject to "ethnic cleansing". These folks are murdered simply because of their ethnicity. By categorizing and making such lists, the implication is that these ethnicities are somehow different. John Bob (talk) 22:11, 2 January 2008 (UTC)

Editing as well in German wikipedia, I'm somewhat bewildered by this discussion and by the category in general. On de it's informally accepted that a person's religion or ethnic background should only be mentioned if there's evidence that it has or had influence on his encyclopedic relevance; else it's considered irrelevant (ethnicity) or private (religion).

Encyclopedias like the Britannica usually mention this personal data in the opening paragraph: Name and title, dates of birth and death, nationality, what the person did, why the person is significant. Coincidentally, the Manual_of_Style recommends this, too. Of course the person's biography is to be expanded later on, but only on subjects that justify and explain the persons inclusion. In wikipedia, sometimes trivia is included as well: IMHO that's a debatable practice, as it is a potential POV entry point by deliberate and targeted inclusion or exclusion of facts, that would be innocent and unequivocal in other contexts.

At the moment, I'm having some trouble on de with muslim activists (not only conjecture, self avowed, too), who systematically include information on alleged or factual Jewish descent with articles, that deal with politicians they suppose to be pro Israel.

To give an example: Paul Wolfowitz spoke about the influence his family's history had on his career and thinking (relatives where murdered by nazis); thus mentioning it is relevant and legitimate. On the other side, wether Lewis Libby or Yevgeny_Primakov were influenced professionally by their or by their ancestor's religion is speculation at best, imputation at worst; thus their beliefs or ancestry are not encyclopedic. However, the guys mentioned above don't see it that way.

This category's existence can be considered as supporting their practice, therefore I'm worried. --tickle me 06:45, 10 November 2005 (UTC)

I agree with you, but sometimes it isn't easy. This article's subject for example, will probably include many people, who's 'Jewishness' would have no place, had they their own articles. Fadix 21:27, 10 November 2005 (UTC)
I don't understand your remark: Which article do you mean? --tickle me 08:17, 12 November 2005 (UTC)
This one. I think bragging the 'Jewishness' of someone as a slander is not isolated to some Islamists, they do it like it is innocently and bring that in articles, when it is something unimportant and that the person in question is not a practicing Jew. Also, in the cases of Jews, it is a little bit more complex and for this reason it is hard to know if this information should be included since "Jewish" is a religion and an ethnicity at the same time. Fadix 18:34, 12 November 2005 (UTC)
is not isolated to some Islamists...: Indeed, it happens with Nazism related articles too. On es (Spanish) I find it not only with articles regarding catholicism, but with a lot of biographies too, it's as if Franco wasn't dead.
is a religion and an ethnicity...: I differ on that issue. IMO Jews of e.g. marroccan, ashkenazi or falasha origin don't share any ethnicity at all, they share nationalities at best - and a language, if, coincidentally, they happen to be e.g. Israeli. I keep thinking that exclusively if there's evidence that it has or had influence on the given article's subject's encyclopedic relevance, religious affiliation should be included. Seems like we're alone in discussing this: I' m thinking of getting more pushy with the subject. --tickle me 21:24, 12 November 2005 (UTC)
Let's agree to differ. And: I may be anything, but certainly not a Muslim activist. --König Alfons der Viertelvorzwölfte 12:02, 13 November 2005 (UTC)

The discussion is continued here, (Ctrl+F for Sorry to bump in with a new approach), though I'm afraid that a real cultural divide is opening...

I'm frankly surprised this category exists at all. We should also include "Baptist Americans", "Christian Americans", and so forth. Why in the world are we "branding" Jews at Wikipedia?....

I'm surprised at the consistant ignorance by the people making the above argument. Ignorance of the fact that we have categories for practically every ethnicity and religion in the US (As Jewishness falls under both). I.e. Category:Baptists from the United States and Category:Irish-American politicians. Mad Jack 07:54, 3 February 2007 (UTC)

My point was that this direction could be and has been dangerous in the past. Perhaps, then, we should encourage Baptists to wear a "B", Scientologists to wear an "S", Catholics to wear "C", and so forth. That way we can more readily identify these groups.

Category:European Americans[edit]

Should this be listed under Category:European Americans? An editor removed it, noting, Israel is not in Europe. However, since the dispersion of the Jewish people form Israel occured so long ago, and since the overwhelming majority of Jewish American are Ashkenazis whose ancestors dwelled in Europe for over a millenium, I think that we can categorize Jewish Americans as a type of European American. Remember, categories don't have to be 100% accurate. -Willmcw 11:16, 6 December 2005 (UTC)

It is not necessary, if the specific Jewish American has European blood he or she will be categorized as Category:French Americans (e.g. Patricia Arquette), Category:Irish-Americans (e.g. Matthew Broderick), Category:Swedish-Americans (e.g. Jake Gyllenhaal), etc. Their still be European Americans, but through a more appropriate category. --Vizcarra 19:59, 6 December 2005 (UTC)
Actually, no, that's not true. Many editors consider Jewishness to surplant other ethnicities. So folks who are of Jewish descent would not be labelled French Americans, even if their family had been in France for hundreds of years. Jewish blood is European blood, except of course for the Sephardim from Asia or Africa. -Willmcw 21:19, 6 December 2005 (UTC)
I'm not talking about Jewish people who may have ancestors who married Europeans and thus would have European blood, but those who can be certified (if you will) to have European blood. That is, those whose European ancestry can be verified and not based on historic assumptions. Because in that case Jewish Americans would be Category:Hispanic Americans (through intermarriage of Sephardic Jews with other groups of Jews) and Category:Asian Americans (through intermarriages with Arabs) and Category:African Americans (through Egyptian and Ethiopian intermarriage). Lebanese Americans would be European American (because of the Roman and Greeks), European Americans would be Asian American (through Indo-Aryans blood), Native Americans are Asian Americans, etc. You can take these arguments way too far. --Vizcarra 21:43, 6 December 2005 (UTC)
The examples Vizcarra used (Broderick, Gyllenhaal and Arquette - btw, I'm not even sure if Arquette is French at all, I think someone just assumed based on their last name) all have a non-Jewish parent, that's what Vizcarra was trying to say - i.e. Broderick has an Irish Catholic father, etc. so he would be listed under a "European American" category. But anyway, I think the category "European Americans" should include "Jewish Americans" because, indeed, the large majority come from Europe. Vulturell 22:04, 6 December 2005 (UTC)
"European blood" is not a term that I have an exact defininition for. If one millenium of residence on the European continent is not sufficient to make a group European then how many millenia does it take? Are Gypsies (the Roma people) European? I would think so, even if their distant ancestors came from somewhere else. -Willmcw 23:50, 6 December 2005 (UTC)
Whereas the majority of "Jewish Americans" (or "American Jews," I could make a point for the use of either) come from Europe, I would not consider this a large majority. It all depends on which American Jewish community you are analyzing. For instance, in the city of Atlanta (one of the larger Jewish communities in the country), there exists clans of Sephardim that outnumber the Ashkenazim in certain parts of the community. Jews have recently migrated to the United States from countries such as South Africa, and Israel in large numbers. These Jews do not fit the category of European Americans. Thus, the only categories that can be used to describe Jewish Americans in general are Jewish Americans, or American Jews. t-bte288-c 00:45, 7 December 2005 (UTC)
We're not categrizing the people of Atlanta, we're categorizing people in this category. I think you'll find that a very large majority of them are of European descent.-Willmcw 01:03, 7 December 2005 (UTC)
Exactly. The category "European Americans" does apply, even if half of the Jewish population of the U.S. is Sephardic (and it isn't). Heck, a large number of Sephardic Jews are European too! I.e. from Greece (Hank Azaria) or even Holland in some cases (see Neve Campbell).Vulturell 01:31, 7 December 2005 (UTC)

I think Paula Abdul would be surprised to learn that she's a European American. Tomertalk 02:20, 7 December 2005 (UTC)

I think you are wrong. Her (Ashkenazi) mother, surnamed Rykiss, is from Canada. No doubt she's of European descent. Also, having this category be under "European Americans" doesn't necessarily mean that every single person listed is of European descent, just means some are. Vulturell 02:23, 7 December 2005 (UTC)
Canada is not in Europe. --Vizcarra 20:43, 8 December 2005 (UTC)
It happens, in fact, sometimes I actually am wrong. Has she ever classified herself as a European American? How many Canadians or Mexicans or Americans, in fact, consider themselves "European Mexicans/Canadians/American"? How long did your ancestors have to spend in Europe in order to become "European"? How long do your ancestors have to have been "out of Europe" before you're finally no longer considered "European"? If this progresses far enough, theoretically, Category:European Americans should ultimately be in Category:African Americans. Tomertalk 02:46, 7 December 2005 (UTC)
I quite agree, Tomer. jnothman talk 02:51, 7 December 2005 (UTC)
Well, now you're bringing up questions that apply to pretty much every single European-originated ethnicity/nationality/culture/etc. and not specifically relevant to this discussion. I have no idea what Abdul "considers herself to be", and it really is irrelevant. Does George W. Bush consider himself a "European American"? Vulturell 02:52, 7 December 2005 (UTC)
Indeed, but dismissing the question because you think the venue is wrong doesn't do anything to actually offer a response to the issue that prompted it. If you want to have categories into which to classify people, I'm not going to fight with you about it too much (although I think my opinion is probably pretty well-known among people with this penchant). I do think, however, that it's better to come up with parameters for the category at the outset, which doesn't seem to have been done here very well, either with this category, nor with Category:European Americans apparently, or this discussion would be moot. Tomertalk 04:14, 7 December 2005 (UTC)
A majority of Jewish Americans may have European blood. If a majority of American basketball players are found to be African American... shall we add Category:American basketball players to Category:African Americans as well? The Israelites spent much time in Egypt, shall we add Jewish Americans to Category:Egyptian Americans and Category:African Americans too (since they're all descendants of the Israelites)? --Vizcarra 20:43, 8 December 2005 (UTC)
Well, we know for a fact a large number of these people have ancestors who lived in Europe for centuries. We don't know for a fact if a large number of these people have Egyptian ancestors. Anyway, this should either have "European Americans" OR "Americans by National Origin", which is an appropriate category if you're tracing them back all the way to the beginning. Vulturell 01:23, 9 December 2005 (UTC)
If we don't know for a fact that they are Jewish ethnically then they should not be listed in the category (the description specifically says ethnically Jewish and not Jewish by religion). If they are ethnically Jewish then they are Asian Americans (Israel is in Asia) and because the Israelites lived in Europe for many centuries, then they would be African Americans too. --Vizcarra 01:48, 9 December 2005 (UTC)
No, I moved most if not all of the converts to the special "Converts to Judaism" section. What I meant is we know for a fact that most of these people's (ethnically Jewish) ancestors lived in Europe for centuries and most recently came from Europe. But we don't know for a fact if these specific people's ancestors lived in Egypt or not (I mean, not all ethnic Jews' ancestors lived in Egypt, did they? I'm sure some stayed behind in Israel even if their story is not told in the Bible), and their residence in Egypt was such a long time ago, anyway, which is not the case for their residence in Europe. But anyway, I think this should either be under "European Americans" OR "Americans by National Origin", i.e. that belonging there because we know for a fact that ethnic Jews originally came from Israel, a nation. Vulturell 05:05, 9 December 2005 (UTC)
Well, we don't know who descends from the people who went somewhere else (other than Europe) so it would be all speculation and it would not be accurate. If such person in the Jewish American category is descendant from a Hungarian Jew, then the person can be Hungarian-American. Remember that we have to be careful and avoid making claims that are not "based on verifiable sources", we cannot do original research here.--Vizcarra 06:24, 9 December 2005 (UTC)

Jews from Syria, Iran, Bukhara, etc, and many Israelis are not from Europe[edit]

It would be a gross injustice to ignore the hundreds of thousands of Jews in the United States who originate from decidedly un-European places like Syria (mostly in Brooklyn and Deal, New Jersey), Iran (mostly in Los Angeles and Great Neck, New York), and many other Sephardi Jews, Yemenite Jews, Mizrahi Jews, Bukharan Jews, who came directly to the USA or via Israel (it's estimated that since the founding of the sate in 1948 close to one million Israelis have moved to the USA and at least half have been Sephardim) and via other countries, who have made the USA their home. So tread with caution. IZAK 12:40, 7 December 2005 (UTC)

...and "Ashkenazic" won't fit, either[edit]

A huge majority of Jewish Americans are Ashkenazic, having emigrated, or descending from emigrants, from Russia, Poland, Germany, etc... But this is not always the case. For instance, Hank Azaria is Sephardic, just like Paula Abdul. Jerry Seinfeld's mother is of Syrian desent. And BTW, are Marilyn Monroe or Sammy Davis, Jr Ashkenazic ? Mrbluesky 00:51, 20 January 2006 (UTC)

I happen to know a number of "Russian Jews" who are from central Asian republics and who lived in Russia east of the Urals. Not only did they live in Asia there, but they also (some of them on their way to the US) live in Asia still, having made עaliya. They ones who still live in Israel are clearly Asians, and those who have moved to the US are clearly Asian Americans, not European Americans. While we're at it, Gypsies should be recategorized into Category:Ethnic groups in Asia. Tomertalk 12:35, 6 February 2006 (UTC)
Positively ! I strongly suggest we should veto the inclusion in the "European Americans" category. BTW, the "American people by national origin" reference should be erased too. Jews are a people, a religious group, maybe an ethnic group, but by no means a nationality (the legal situation of former Soviet Union is the exception).
Mrbluesky 18:51, 6 February 2006 (UTC)
I've taken both categories back out. The "European Americans" category is quite clearly unsupported here on TALK, and while I would argue that Jews are a nation, the current general understanding of that term does not fit my more refined and better-educated, and, generally, of course, just plain far more highly intelligent, definition.  :-D Tomertalk 20:22, 6 February 2006 (UTC)
Jews do not belong in the European American category. Jews are defined as a nation, with origins in the Middle East. They're not European.Evildoer187 (talk) 15:51, 1 August 2013 (UTC)

Circular hierarchy[edit]

This category is both a parent and a child of Category:Jewish American history. It shouldn't be both. It seems to me that "Jewish Americans" are part of "Jewish American history", so my thinking is that this should be the child, and "Jewish American history" should be the parent. Comments? -- MisterHand 21:09, 6 February 2006 (UTC)

I concur. Tomertalk 21:20, 6 February 2006 (UTC)
So do I --Vizcarra 21:22, 6 February 2006 (UTC)

Jewish and Judaism...are they the same?[edit]

Although many people who convert to Judaism adopt the title as a "Jew" this is actually incorrect, there is in fact only a few true "Jews" (by race) left. Jew meaning being from the house of Judah and being included in the blessings from the covenant(the chosen people). Yes, people can convert to a religion and i am not saying they cannot do this, but what i am saying is you cannot convert into a race. Most of the "Jews" that believe themselves to be Jews are not even from the house of Judah, they are merely Khazars that converted to Judaism in mass proportions around the 8th century (read The Thirteenth Tribel, by Aurthur Koestler). This converting to Judaism is in fact irony in itself considering true Jews are not supposed to marry outside of the Covenant such as Ham son of Noah did (which is how we still have the African race today, Ham took an African wife and then was cast out by his father soon after the floods ended). Marrying inside of the Covenant was thought to keep the Jewish "Race" pure and unaltered because they were the "chosen race". Which now they allow conversion and everything is still great right? Wrong, the Jews (being the Khazar origin jews) which are now in control over Israel (which by religion is their holy land so i give them that) will not let the newly converted East African Jews, or Jews that have married outside of the covenant citizenship in the country. Which basically by doing this makes them look like they too are part of the "pure" race, which isn't true at all. Which i find quite ridiculous considering all black people have blood ties to the house of Judah through Ham. Which would make that holy land more theirs than the "so-called" Jews. My email is if you would like to speak to me about anything i have posted here, i have been studying the Jewish "race" origins for a while and have read a number of books if you have any questions just let me know.

Aw, not the Khazar thing again ! Can somebody reply to this, I'm feeling frustrated already Mrbluesky 11:23, 17 February 2006 (UTC)

Hello Why don't get yourself a Wikipedia user's name? As for Aurthur Koestler he is not taken seriously except by some crackpots -- who hate him too. It is not clear if you're asking a question or making a statement or perhaps even giving "answers"? Until such time as you can clarify what it is that you want exactly, why don't you read the articles about Jew (mainly an ethnicity) and about Judaism (as a religion) and as you will learn, Jews are both a NON-EXCLUSIVE ethnicity (meaning they do accept converts) and a religion not based on race but yes, based on religious ideas as expressed in the Torah. It would help if you would also read the articles on Conversion to Judaism and Who is a Jew? all of which cover the subjects very thoroughly. Take care. IZAK 11:38, 17 February 2006 (UTC)

Ethnic v. Religious Jews[edit]

In January, an anonymous user added a description to this category limiting it to Americans of Jewish ethnicity/descent. Upon reading this talk page, I see that this change was done without consensus. Upon examining the other Jewish-American categories (singers, musicians, and actors), I see that no such limitation exists. Since it makes little sense to have a person such as Sammy Davis Jr. listed as a Jewish-American Actor and yet have him not qualify as a Jewish-American, I've deleted this stricture from this category. This keeps it uniform with the other Jewish-American categories. If editors build a consensus to re-add this restriction, then please consider updating the other Jewish-American categories as well. I'm only partial to consistent quality. Rklawton 04:26, 23 February 2006 (UTC)

Every category should have a criteria for inclusion. I added back the earlier criteria, and amended it to include religious belief. If that is not the correct criteria then let's fix it. -Will Beback 20:30, 23 February 2006 (UTC)


Ideally, this category should only consist of subcategories, with no articles directly listed. You can help by placing articles into one or more subcategories and changing them so they do not point directly to this category. If necessary, additional (occupational) sub-cats can/should be added. Thanks Hmains 17:18, 17 June 2006 (UTC)

Jews as "European-Americans"[edit]

I have removed the category "European-Americans" from the page. Not all Jews are of European origin. Significant numbers are of Middle-Eastern and North African heritage. Unlike your supposition that people of German ancestry who came from to the U.S. via Argentina or Chile should be removed because of this premise, they at least have some sort of ethnic tie to Europe, whereas a Jew from Morrocco or Ethiopia does not (Bukhori, Dzhidi, Kurdish, Judeo-Berber, Juhuri, Mizrahi, etc., whose ancestors may have never even stepped foot onto the European continent or have any sort of ethnic or cultural ties to it.) Also, you are labouring under the impression that Judaism is somehow entirely an ethnic construct, and of course, it is not. Sammy Davis, Jr. would probably not be called a "European-American" by most people. ExRat

Actually, Davis' mother is from Cuba which could mean ancestors from Spain. But that's irrelevant. The point is, a very, very, very large number of Jews are European in recent origin. There is little to no reason to exclude this category since such a large overwhleming amount of American Jews - even Sephardic Jews - are European Americans. If you think there are Jews of other origin who are excluded because of this cat - you should add "Jewish Americans" to the origin cat of that group - i.e. Hispanic Americans, etc. But I can't see a single reason to be exclusionist here. Mad Jack 04:40, 2 August 2006 (UTC)
Also see Template talk:European American Mad Jack 04:46, 2 August 2006 (UTC)

"There is little to no reason to exclude this category since such a large overwhleming amount of American Jews - even Sephardic Jews - are European Americans."
Jack, Jack, Jack . . . doesn't that sentence sound vaguely familiar? It certainly does to me. YOU can not decide who is and who is not an "X American". Here we now have Jack deciding in his opinion what constitutes an "X-American". How very fascinating.
Also, I did indeed look at the template, and merely saw you asking why "Jewish-Americans" couldn't be added as a subcategory.
I can find several reasons to be exclusionist here, now that you've mentioned it:
    1. You can't decide who is and who is not an "X-American", especially if that group of individuals is of a religious denomination (and one that is comprised of nearly every ethnic group known to man).
    2. You can't decide who is and who is not "X American" because YOU said so. Unless you have a source that clearly and unequivocally states that "Jewish Americans are Europeans" then they can not be added. Good luck with that - the last I looked at an atlas, there is no sovereign Jewish nation in Europe.
    3. Jews are not merely an ethnic group and to try to claim otherwise is misleading. Judaism is an inclusive religion that anyone of any ethnic group can convert to.
    4. As I've stated above, there are many Jewish groups/individuals in the USA who have NIL connection culturally, ethnically, linguistically or historically to Europe.
    5. Many Jews even of European heritage do not consider themselves anything other than Americans. Individuals of Sephardic Jewish heritage (for example) who originated on the Iberian peninsula (Europe) and Ashkanzi Jewish heritage who originated in Germany (Europe) may have moved/been forcibly exiled for hundreds of years in other (non-European) nations before resettling in the USA and in no way feel they are "European", but feel a kinship to or describe themselves as "Argentinean-American" or "Dominican-American" or "Canadian-American". You can't decide for them that they are an "X-American" ethnic group.
Follow your own rules that you so stringently (and irritatingly) subject everyone else to. ExRat 06:20, 2 August 2006 (UTC)

Of course I can't decide which particular person is X-American or not. That's pretty obvious, but it has nothing to do with this discussion. This discussion is whether Jewish Americans can be categorized as European Americans. Are American Jews mostly European Jews? Of course. Google it. A very large number. Check the template talk. Several people have agreed that Jewish should be on there. Jews are an ethnic group beside being a demonination. They are not "comprised" of any ethnic group, they are the ethnic group - the majority of the US Jews being Sephards and Ashkenazis, both of which are European. And as for "Many Jews even of European heritage do not consider themselves anything other than Americans" - that is just silly. I mean, obviously, of course that is true, but that is just as true for every other X-American group. Now, if you want me to find a source that says American Jews or Jewish Americans are European, that can be easily done. But the "You can't decide who is or is not X-American" thing, while of course true, has little to do with this. Mad Jack 06:24, 2 August 2006 (UTC)

As for specific sources, let's see - [1] "Like many American Jews, Bartal pointed out, he is from Eastern Europe", or [2] "The majority of American Jewry is of Ashkenazi origin", etc. I mean, what's the point? We all know the majority of American Jews are of European origin, so what's there more to source? If you wanted to discuss this further, maybe the Template talk would be a better place Mad Jack 06:28, 2 August 2006 (UTC)
My problem isn't so much with the addition of Jewish-Americans being added to the category of European-Americans, as the impression it leaves that Jews are specifically a European group - and I think it gives (weird English phrase: "short-shirft" (?)) to the large swath of Jews who are by no means of a "European" background. ExRat 06:52, 2 August 2006 (UTC)
Well there is a relatively tiny number of those Jews, and I frankly can't see why we should't add "Jewish Americans" to those parent cats, too, i.e. the categories for the places where those Jews originate from. Which ones did you have in mind? Mad Jack 06:55, 2 August 2006 (UTC)

Europe American[edit]

Please see European American article there is not reference about the State of Israel being part of European American. I understand they many descents are from Europe but then it would a different category. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by Alfiboy (talk • alfiboy 19:02, 3 March 2007 (UTC)contribs) 18:59, 3 March 2007 (UTC).

Are atheists included?[edit]

The category scope is described as "Americans of Jewish heritage, or adherents of Judaism." This seems to exclude atheists born to Jewish parents. Is that intended? If so, please clarify the scope further on the category page. For an example, I'm wondering if Richard Stallman should be removed from this category. He's a stanch atheist and religion or religious ceremonies do not seem to have played a role in his childhood, but his mother is Jewish, so Stallman is "ethnically jewish" (if that term exists) but is in no way under the umbrella of the jewish religion. So is he in or out? Can someone please clarify the scope of this category? Thanks. Gronky 00:32, 24 January 2007 (UTC)

Well, it seems clear enough to me. All notable "Americans of Jewish heritage" are to be included, and U.S. atheists with Jewish parents are "Americans of Jewish heritage", therefore they belong to the category. Mrbluesky 02:10, 24 January 2007 (UTC)
That depends on the defintion of "heritage", and the only defition on seems to define heritage in terms of possessions inherited, but if you mean for the definition to include atheists born to jews, I'll clarify that on the category page. Gronky 02:39, 24 January 2007 (UTC)
I think the point is though, that by looking at the tag 'American Jew', readers looking at the page don't know if a person is Jewish ethnically, or religiously, or both. Perhaps we should be clearer and separate them? Or create a more convincing category name? Miscreant 05:00, 20 September 2007 (UTC)
The traditional definition of "Jew" simply meant a member of the Jewish people (practice or non-practice of Judaism didn't have much to do with it - "Judaism" is simply a set of rules for the Jewish people; you could compare it to how an American citizen who breaks or does not follow American law is still an American). Being a Jew traditionally would be someone who was either born to a Jewish mother or had a conversion to Judaism. Since so few of the people in this category are converts, it's really pointless to make a distiction (and converts are supposed to be considered just as Jewish as those who are born Jewish). All Hallow's Wraith 05:08, 20 September 2007 (UTC)

Sepharadic and Non-Sepharadic Jews[edit]

I see by your posts that you all have a lack of knowledge about the Jewish people. Who said that everyone, who is not Ashkenazic, is Sepharadic? I'm reminding you that the definition of a Sepharadic Jew is a Jew of Spanish/Portugese Origins, and it can be traced easily by three ways. A person's surname (Espinoza and other Sepharadic Jewish surnames), If the family are Ladino-Speaking Jews or not, and the country which the family came from (most of the Sepharadic Jews have lived in the Balkan since they were expelled: Turkey, Bulgaria and Romania, although they spread all over Europe (Russia, The Netherlands, Belgium, Germany, Czech Republic, Yugoslavia)). The other jews are called Mizrakhi Jews. Roseman10 12:44, 21 April 2007 (UTC)

Subcats need to all be on first page[edit]

Can we please get all the subcats on the first page? This bug in the wiki software gives the illusion that the subcats end in "J." No good! Badagnani 20:11, 20 May 2007 (UTC)

All the subcats still need to be on the first page! Badagnani 06:29, 1 September 2007 (UTC)


Is there a category for or list of Americans Jews who emigrated to Israel? Seems oddly lacking on Wikipedia. There's an article Americo-Liberian and category Americo-Liberian people, but I can't seem to find anything comparable. -Acjelen 22:22, 13 September 2007 (UTC)

That sounds like an interesting category. You should create it. All Hallow's Wraith 03:12, 14 September 2007 (UTC)

Category to be added?[edit]

I would like to see a category Jewish Actors. We have Artists and Photographers and Writers, why not Actors? There are quite a few! I don't know who could set that up, but (s)he would do us all a service!

Websun, Canada —Preceding unsigned comment added by Websun (talkcontribs) 15:23, 14 October 2007 (UTC)

Reminder: Category use must be supported by references[edit]

I just checked the first ten names listed in this category, and 6 out of the 10 articles do not have any reference in the article that says the subject is Jewish at this time. Please remember, just because someone has a Jewish-sounding last name, that doesn't mean that they are ethnically or religiously Jewish. Categories unsupported by a reliable source should not be added to articles per. WP:CAT (and WP:BLP in the case of living persons.) I fixed those first six articles (Benjamin Aaron, Richard Aaron, Elie Abel, Aaron Abeyta, Abraham Abraham, and Dan Abrams), but if that sample is any indication, then over half of the people listed in this category probably need to be removed. Please remember, categories are just as affected by Wikipedia's verifiability guidelines as anything else. Also, if you have some spare time to check some random articles in this category, please do so. Thank you. -- HiEv 06:02, 15 November 2007 (UTC)

This problem and the comments by User:Notmyrealname in #Need for caution above need to be acted on. The nonsense currently on the category page needs to be replaced with a clear statement of the limitations that should exist on the use of these categorizations. Gene Nygaard (talk) 04:15, 6 February 2008 (UTC)

Category count[edit]

I've noticed that the number of names in this category continues fluctuates (often losing names instead of gaining them), as it seems that some people like to remove Category:American Jews from the articles of people who are both Americans and Jews, so this is simply to state for the record: this category, as of today, currently contains 3,037 total names, not including the people contained within all of the subcategories. --Wassermann (talk) 09:42, 24 May 2009 (UTC)

BLP issue?[edit]

Is it appropriate to place living people in this category if they do not self-identify as Jewish or their being ethnically or religiously Jewish plays no role in their public life? According to WP:BLP:

Category tags regarding religious beliefs and sexual orientation should not be used unless two criteria are met:
  • The subject publicly self-identifies with the belief or orientation in question;
  • The subject's beliefs or sexual orientation are relevant to the subject's notable activities or public life, according to reliable published sources.

In the spirit of this policy, it would seem inappropriate to include persons who are Jewish in no other way than by birth or upbringing in the category. siℓℓy rabbit (talk) 14:37, 23 November 2008 (UTC)

I'm not sure that it's really a BLP issue, but it is a Wikipedia problem. Jewishness is ethnic, cultural, and/or religious. How to deal with it has been a very contentious issue probably since Wikipedia began. The current criteria says:
  • American adherents of Judaism, or Americans of ethnic Jewish heritage, including those with another religion or none at all born to Jewish parents.
That puts it on the same level as Italian Americans, or other ethnic groups, while allowing non-ethnic adherents as well. Many Italian Americans probably don't identify themselves that way, but if at least one parent or grandparent is Italian then it is a logical category. Perhaps a long term solution to this problem is creating two sets of categories: "religious Jews" and "ethnic Jews". I don't know the best way out of this, but it's a constant problem.   Will Beback  talk  20:28, 18 April 2009 (UTC)
One quirk of this category definition is that we classify Madeleine Albright as an American Jew. She was raised Catholic, converted to episcopalianism, and did not learn her parents were ethnically Jewish until she was 60. If there were a way we could separate ethnic descent from religious self-identification, it would be better. There used to be a Category: Americans of Jewish descent which I would have thought fitted someone like Albright better; perhaps we should revive it. The deletion discussion is at Wikipedia:Categories_for_discussion/Log/2009_May_11#Category:Americans_of_Jewish_descent. --JN466 16:48, 4 November 2010 (UTC)

This category defies logic[edit]

Today I just learned there are 195 American Jews. Does that seem encyclopedic to anyone? Pawsplay (talk) 04:24, 14 December 2009 (UTC)

What is the value or intent behind this article? How does it enhance anyone's understanding of Judaism? And why is Judaism singled out (along with Islam) for this kind of "information"?

The article should be deleted.Roberterubin (talk) 17:21, 17 April 2011 (UTC)


Why is Paula Froelich alphabetized under "P" instead of "F"? Casey (talk) 05:29, 4 March 2010 (UTC)

and WHY did we move this from American Jews?[edit]

This is silly. Why shouldn't this be at "American Jews"?--Louiedog (talk) 02:01, 20 April 2010 (UTC)

See recent discussion about this here. Good Ol’factory (talk) 05:20, 20 April 2010 (UTC)

Please see current discussion regarding this category (and proposal to change the Category:Israeli Jews - withdrawn) on Wikipedia:Categories for discussion/Speedy. Davshul (talk) 20:38, 20 April 2010 (UTC)

Note for the record. Following a full CFD discussion here, the name of this category reverted to "American Jews" from "American Jewish people". Davshul (talk) 10:50, 25 May 2010 (UTC)

Middle Eastern American[edit]

Seeing as Jews are defined (both by themselves and by others) as a nation with origins in the Middle East, they should be placed in the Middle Eastern American category along with other Semitic groups. Please discuss.Evildoer187 (talk) 15:54, 1 August 2013 (UTC)

I agree. There was a parallel discussion about this in Category talk:American people of Jewish descent#Americans of Southwest Asian Descent where the consensus resolved that they are Middle Eastern and Southwest Asian. Musashiaharon (talk) 21:16, 9 October 2015 (UTC)