Saturday, September 26, 2009

Cheap Jews

On Tablet, an interview with Lauren Weber, author of book, In Cheap We Trust: The Story of a Misunderstood American Virtue. Sample:

There’s something paradoxical about the connection between Jews and money. There are stereotypes about Jews being tightfisted, but also about Jews being gaudy.

The stereotype combines both admiration and resentment, and that’s a particularly American combination. On the one hand Jews were called miserly, on the other hand they were called ostentatious. Jews would be closed out of certain resorts because they were vulgar. In the book, I talk about this stereotype of the Jew living in a hovel that was secretly opulent inside. You’re damned if you do, damned if you don’t.
One of the greatest challenges of being a Jew interested in frugality and simplicity is the (almost exclusively internal) challenge of the "cheap Jew" stereotype. Jews will make poor decisions about money because they don't want to appear cheap.

I wonder if Scottish people have this problem?

1 comment:

weston said...

Good to see you posting again.