Grant points to Daniel Elazar's work to show how American Jewry has leaned towards universalism while Israel leans towards universalism, the difference and differentiation threatening to divide the entities. But she also points to Chaim Nachman Bialik's writing to show how "Jewish life is challenged, but ultimately strengthened by the constant tension between the pull to assimilate and universalize and the push to retain and preserve our particular identity and forms of expression." Backed by Jewish text, she suggests that navigating tensions within the Jewish experience – universalism and particularism, religion and peoplehood, the individual and community, sacred and profane, Israel and the diaspora – " is an integral part of what it means to be a Jew."

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