Published Reviews of Jewish Justices of the Supreme Court


“I thought I knew a lot about the Supreme Court’s eight Jewish justices, since I have known six of them personally. But I learned so much more from David Dalin’s brilliant and readable account of their very different lives and connections to their Jewish heritage. A must read for anyone interested in Jewish, American or legal history.”

ALAN DERSHOWITZ,  Felix Frankfurter Professor of Law, Emeritus, Harvard Law School and author of Taking the Stand: My Life in the Law


“… an exceptionally absorbing and informative portrait gallery of Justice Brandeis and his seven successors [on the Supreme Court] … Dalin has a special flair for revealing the peculiarities of each path that the eight Jewish Justices took to the top. He is ingenious in drawing biographical comparisons and in making historical generalizations about the composition of the Court … Dalin’s accounts of the major cases and decisions for which the eight were responsible are lucid and succinct. A rabbi as well as historian, he offers the greatest illumination on the Jewishness of these Justices.”

-STEPHEN J. WHITFIELD, Jewish Book World


“Sparkling historical nuggets abound in David Dalin’s wonderful … review of the history of Jewish Supreme Court Justices … extraordinarily interesting and informative.”
-NATHAN LEWIN, Washington Jewish Week


“Its accessible style, abundance of illuminating anecdotes and helpful synthesis of an extensive scholarly literature will make it valuable to historians of the American Jewish Experience.”

-SAMUEL GOLDMAN, Jewish Review of Books


“Dalin’s incomparable work, Jewish Justices of the Supreme Court, is meticulously researched, immensely learned, and – best of all – a delightful read. For a book to be both scholarly and entertaining is really quite a difficult feat, but Dalin has that rare ability … The place where Dalin’s work shines most brilliantly is in its handling of such historic, landmark cases as Schenck v. United States, Schechter Poultry Corp. v. United States, Brown v. Board of Education, Miranda v. Arizona and Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission – in all of which the various Jewish Justices played leading roles. Dalin’s knowledge is encyclopedic, his love of the subject(s) obvious.”

-KURT F. STONE, Florida Jewish Journal


“An unprecedented assessment of all eight of the Jewish legal superstars.”



“Individual assessments of justices are united by a common appreciation among Jews of the connection between Judaism and the rule of law, both as an extension of religious law and as a bulwark against political persecution and oppression. Thumbnail biographies of each justice chart their personal journeys to the Court, their nomination fights, and contributions to constitutional history and interpretation … Highly recommended.”



“A fascinating and overdue survey of the eight Jews who have figured among the 113 occupants of the highest judicial office. Jewish Justices of the Supreme Court … is copiously end-noted and dispassionately recounted. Yet it remains so readable that it is digestible in a weekend.”

-MICHAEL I. KRAUSS, Public Discourse


“David G. Dalin has given us a fine one-volume summary of the eight Jewish-Americans who have served on the Supreme Court of the United States … He draws upon biographies about several of these justices, their essential non-judicial writings, and much of their judicial work. Collectively, their stories trace the arc of the modern American Jewish experience, especially with respect to politics and the law. Dalin looks across the individual biographies of each of these justices to discuss their connections, including the professional friendship between Brandeis and Cardozo, and the mentorship turned almost paternal relationship between Brandeis and Frankfurter … Moreover, he discusses each justice’s unique Jewish identity.”

-FREDERICK M. LAWRENCE, former President of Brandeis University, Contemporary Jewry


“It is an honor to add my voice to the chorus of praise for Rabbi Dr. David G. Dalin. Dr. Dalin has been a Scholar-in-Residence at Temple Israel of Norfolk, Virginia, on several occasions over the past two decades. He is a gifted scholar and speaker. He has the knack of making serious history accessible to a congregational audience, an adult education group, or a book club. In short, he is the perfect choice for that valuable group we all seek to reach, the “educated general audience”. He has invariably selected topics of interest to our synagogue audience. Whether speaking about the Jewish Justices of the Supreme Court, the relationship between American Presidents and America’s Jews, Baseball’s greatest Jewish superstars, Hank Greenberg and Sandy Koufax, or even Jewish Gangsters, he finds ways to make American Jewish history come to life. An engaging and erudite speaker, Dr. Dalin is always a welcome Scholar-in-Residence.”

Temple Israel of Norfolk Virginia
Adjunct Professor of History and Religious Studies, Virginia Wesleyan College


“It has been our great pleasure to have historian, author and Rabbi, Dr. David Dalin, as a featured speaker in our Adult University Lecture Series here at the Levis JCC in Boca Raton. For three consecutive years, he has presented and prepared lectures given in an engaging and thoughtful way.  Topics such as The Presidents of the United States and the Jews, The Life and Legacy of Supreme Court Justice Louis D. Brandeis and The Jewish Justices of the Supreme Court, from Brandeis to Kagan, have fascinated our audiences.  David Dalin is a dynamic speaker!  I certainly hope that he will continue to lecture here at our JCC, for many years to come.”

STEPHANIE OWITZ,  Assistant Director
Phyllis and Harvey Sandler Center
Adolph and Rose Levis Jewish Community Center
Boca Raton, Florida


“Dr. David Dalin is a brilliant scholar and a wonderful speaker. I have participated with him in several joint speaking engagements and panel discussions and have watched him entrance an audience with his ability to recount stories and make history come alive. I have also interviewed him at various times on my radio program and have received a wonderful response from radio listeners on each occasion. David’s reputation as a riveting speaker and engaging conversationalist is well-known, and there is good reason why he is asked to be a scholar-in-residence throughout the country, and to speak before a myriad of groups and organizations.  Having David Dalin speak guarantees a sure fire success!”

Radio Talk Show Host  KGO 810 AM
San Francisco


“Dr. David Dalin has spoken at our congregation as a scholar-in-residence on several occasions over the years. Among other topics, he has spoken about “The Presidents of the United States and the Jews,” the fascinating topic of one of his many books,  and has mesmerized our community with his insightfully-thoughtful discussion and analysis of “Jews and American Politics, Retrospect and Prospect,” a wonderful and always-relevant topic to have him speak about in advance or following a presidential election!  Rabbi Dalin has also spoken about the history of “Jews and Baseball,” another area of his expertise, and the sometimes-forgotten history (as well as stories about) Jewish gangsters in America.  He is a wonderfully engaging speaker. I heartily recommend for a visit to your community!

Temple Israel
Wilkes-Barre,  Pennsylvania


“I have had the pleasure of knowing Rabbi Dr. David Dalin for over 30 years and I can personally attest to his expertise as a scholar of the American Jewish experience and as a terrific speaker.  A few years ago, Rabbi Dr. Dalin was the scholar-in-residence at my synagogue and the reaction by those who heard him was overwhelmingly positive.  Rabbi Dr. Dalin is well respected by his colleagues both in the rabbinate and in academia.  He is an internationally-known first rate scholar of American Jewish history and has lectured extensively on that topic in Southwest Florida and throughout the country. Through his books and articles, as well as his lectures, Rabbi Dr. Dalin conveys his passion about American Jewry and its interaction with American society in all of its multi-faceted dimensions.

I strongly recommend Dr. David Dalin to you as a scholar who imparts his knowledge of the subject matter in a delightfully understandable and intelligent manner.

Temple Beth Tikvah
Greenacres, Florida
President, South Palm Beach County Board of Rabbis


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