Books by Steven R. Weisman

The Chosen Wars: How Judaism Became an American Religion

The Chosen Wars tells the dramatic story of how Judaism redefined itself in America in the 18th and 19th centuries — the personalities that fought each other, the issues that divided them, and how American culture reshaped an ancient religion.

Their struggles gave birth to a distinctly American Judaism, illuminating the larger American experience. Beginning with the arrival of the first Jews in New Amsterdam in 1654, the narrative moves through 250 turbulent years of American history, culminating with the influx of Jews from Russia and Eastern Europe in the late 1800s. A colorful cast of characters — rabbis, soldiers, activists, feminists, and rebels — comes to life in this account. They include Rabbi Isaac Mayer Wise, Mordecai Manuel Noah, Isaac Leeser, Rebecca Gratz, and Felix Adler. The Chosen Wars demonstrates that contemporary debates over Jewish identity and purpose are rooted in the striving and scuffles of the past.


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The Great Tradeoff: Confronting Moral Conflicts in the Era of Globalization

A blend of economics, moral philosophy, history, and politics arguing that the concepts of liberty, justice, virtue, and loyalty help to explain the passionate disagreements spawned by a globally integrated economy.

“A broad and wonderfully stimulating book that will make you think. The Great Tradeoff should be required reading for anyone interested in economic policy.” – Liaquat Ahamed, Pulitzer Prize-winning author of Lords of Finance: The Bankers Who Broke the World.

“An excellent text for the discussion we need. Weisman painstakingly avoids dogmatism and is careful in laying out the often-agonizing choices we face.” – E.J. Dionne, The Washington Post

To read more about this book on the publisher’s website, or to purchase a copy, click here.

Daniel Patrick Moynihan: A Portrait in Letters of an American Visionary

One the best books of 2010 – The New York Times

“There can be no better bedside collection for anyone who is interested in the history of America and the world in the second half of the twentieth century—or in a life lived bravely.” – The Economist

“[This book] will probably be read more widely and for longer, and certainly with greater pleasure, than any of the others on the Moynihan shelf.” – The New Yorker


The Great Tax Wars: Lincoln to Wilson — How the Income Tax Transformed America

“A riveting story, peopled by extraordinary characters … Weisman illuminates American political and economic history from Abraham Lincoln’s administration through Woodrow Wilson’s.” – The New Yorker

“[An] engaging reconstruction…of largely forgotten history….Weisman’s account is crisply written, highly readable, and informative.” – The New York Times

“Weisman lays bare the early history of the progressive income tax…and in the process makes present-day fracases over taxation echo a much longer debate over wealth and its proper uses in the American republic.” – The Washington Post