A Field Guide to the Jewish People A Field Guide to the Jewish People

by Dave Barry, Adam Mansbach and Alan Zweibel

Published by Flatiron Press
Publication date: 2019
hardcover | 256 pages

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The last book on Judaism you will ever have to buy, this hilarious tome from three comedy legends contains the sweetness of an apricot rugelach and all the wisdom of a matzoh ball.

Why do random Jewish holidays keep springing up unexpectedly? Why are yarmulkes round? Who was the first Jewish comedian?

These baffling questions and many more are answered by the comedic powerhouse trio of Dave Barry, Adam Mansbach, and Alan Zweibel. In A Field Guide to the Jewish People the authors dissect every holiday, rite of passage, and tradition, unravel a long and complicated history, and tackle the tough questions that have been plaguing the long-suffering Jewish people everywhere for centuries.

So gather round your chosen ones, pop open a bottle of Manischewitz, and get ready to laugh as you finally begin to understand the inner-workings of Judaism.

"An irreverent take on Jewish life, culture, and lore. No topic is off limits.... This is another zany book for Jews and those who love them." —Kirkus Reviews

“They're back again! However you say ‘three amigos’ in Yiddish, that's exactly what they are. They are like as wheatgrass shot of Jewish culture. If I was having a Bar Mitzvah, I would want to recite lines from this book. Everything I read from these three gives me Jewish envy. I laughed til I plotzed. Did I use that correctly?” —W. Kamau Bell, goyish comedian

Table of Contents

Forewords
Introduction
Preface
Prologue
A Note from the Authors

A JEWISH LIFE
The Name of G-d
What Are the Different Types of Jews?
Jewish Names
The Bris
Discussion Questions for the Bris
The Bar/Bat Mitzvah
Discussion Questions for the Bar/Bat Mitzvah 
SIDEBAR: Frequently Asked Questions About Why Are Yarmulkes Round?
The Jewish Wedding
Judaism and Interfaith Marriage
Judaism and Sexuality
SIDEBAR: Sodom and Gomorrah
Jewish Divorce
Converting to Judaism
The Jewish Home
Keeping Kosher
SIDEBAR: Seltzer
Tzedakah
Death
SIDEBAR: The Evil Eye
The Afterlife

THE JEWISH YEAR
The Jewish CalendaR
Shabbat
Discussion Questions for Shabbat
Rosh Hashanah
Rosh Hashithead
Yom Kippur
SIDEBAR: The Miracle of Jonah
Sukkot
Chanukkah
Discussion Questions for Chanukkah
Tu B’Shvat
Purim
Passover
How to Make Perfect Matzah Balls Every Time
Next Year in Jerusalem
SIDEBAR: Ten Remarkable Similarities Between Moses and Elvis
SIDEBAR: The Book of Joshua
Shavuot
Tisha B’Av
Simchat Torah

JEWISH HISTORY
The Creation Story
The Origins of Judaism
Discussion Questions for The Origins of Judaism
SIDEBAR: The First Jewish Comedian
SIDEBAR: The Story of Isaac
The Kings of Israel: The First Temple
The Second Temple
The Third Temple
SIDEBAR: The Talmud
The First Millenium
SIDEBAR: The Kabbalah
SIDEBAR: The Golem
Israel
SIDEBAR: Bargaining in Israel
The History of Bagels
Modern Jewish History
SIDEBAR: Oy
SIDEBAR: Feh
SIDEBAR: Frequently Asked Questions About the Word “Tumult”
The Holocaust
Last Thursday

QUIZZES, QUESTIONS & ANSWERS, LISTS, AND OTHER ATTEMPTS TO MEET OUR CONTRACTUALLY-OBLIGATED WORD COUNT
Are You an Anti-Semite?
Common Questions About Judaism
Ten People We Wish Were or Were Not Jewish, Ten People You Didn’t Know Were or Were Not Jewish, and Ten People We are Thrilled Aren’t Jewish
A Conversation with the Authors

Acknowledgments
A Note on the Type