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Another School Bans “merchant of Venice”

December 27, 1932
See Original Daily Bulletin From This Date

Following the recent action of Paterson and Baltimore, Shakespeare’s “Merchant of Venice” will be banned from the curriculum of the local high school English department, at the conclusion of the current term. This action is being taken as a result of the protest instituted by Rabbi Emanuel Lifshiz, spiritual leader of the West New York and Guttenberg Talmud Torah and Jewish Center, who declared the play “accentuated hatred toward the Jews and tended to engender an emotional attitude between Jew and non-Jew.”

Harry L. Bain, superintendent of schools, received a letter from Rabbi Lifshitz voicing his protest and, after a conference with the principal of the high school, decided to drop the play from the English course and replace it with another “of equal merit.” It is considered likely that other communities in this area may do likewise in the near future.

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