Rabbi Joshua Eli Plaut, Ph.D.

Rabbi Joshua Eli Plaut, PhD, is exec­u­tive direc­tor of Amer­i­can Friends of Rabin Med­ical and the rab­bi of Met­ro­pol­i­tan Syn­a­gogue in Man­hat­tan. He is an his­to­ri­an, pho­to-ethno­g­ra­ph­er, and cul­tur­al anthro­pol­o­gist, and is also the author of A Kosher Christ­mas: ​’Tis the Sea­son to Be Jew­ish (Rut­gers Uni­ver­si­ty Press) and Greek Jew­ry in the Twen­ti­eth Cen­tu­ry, 1913 – 1983: Pat­terns of Jew­ish Com­mu­nal Sur­vival in the Greek Provinces before and after the Holo­caust (Fair­leigh Dick­in­son Uni­ver­si­ty Press).

My Father’s Journey on a Freedom Ride Bus

Rabbi Joshua Eli Plaut, Ph.D.
January 14, 2016

Jewish activism in the 1960s civil rights movement gained momentum when four Reform rabbis participated in the first Interfaith Freedom Ride on a Greyhound bus traveling from Washington, DC, through South Carolina, to Tallahassee from June 13-16, 1961. Freedom rides tested interstate public transportation hubs for racial segregation. The rabbis, Israel Dresner, Martin Freedman, Allan Levine, and my father Walter H. Plaut, were joined by eight white Protestant ministers, including prominent theologian Robert McAfee Brown, and six AME black ministers and NAACP activists.

Why Some Jews Eat Chinese Food on Christmas

Rabbi Joshua Eli Plaut, Ph.D.
December 25, 2014
We all know that eating Chinese food on Christmas Eve is a sacred Jewish tradition! The origin of this venerated Christmas Jewish tradition dates back over 100 years to the Lower East Side of New York City.