One of the most important massive publications must be newspapers. Meant to keep people well-informed, Yosef Meystel knows that newspapers serve their audience in many ways. It is not only about sharing the day to day news and events, it is also about the culture where it is printed, the development of new ideas and points of view and sharing information from all around the globe.
In the case of Jews, historically newspapers have worked as a useful means of expression. Dating back to the 19th century, almost two centuries after the first newspaper was launched in France, Jews started to produce and publish their own press. These publications were meant to keep Jews informed about relevant issues to their culture. Topics related to laws, economics, and even sports were treated in this first publications.
A Jewish newspaper focuses on information and topics that may be of special interest to Jews and Jewish communities worldwide. It may be a printed or digital piece that includes articles of general interest usually with a marked religious and political focus. For this, topics include Hebrew matters, information in Yiddish and other issues related to religion and politics especially in Israel.
Newspapers operate as any other businesses; the difference is that its major profit does not come from money but from the ability to share information with thousands of people at the same time. For Jews, owning their newspapers is not a matter of making money, it is a matter of keeping their culture informed about subjects that may be interesting for Jews. Thanks to this idea, there are many Jewish newspapers in the United States that operate as small businesses. Some of these newspapers can be found in some Midwestern cities in the U.S.
Related: Jewish Business in The Midwest, Hundreds of Years in History.
The Chicago Jewish Star
Founded in 1990 as an independent twice-monthly Jewish newspaper, the Chicago Jewish Star headquarters are based in Skokie, Illinois. This newspaper aims to provide news related to national and international events. It also provides analysis and different opinions related to local issues that may be relevant to the Jewish community in Illinois.
The newspaper focuses on Middle East events, arts, literature, and politics. Also, it has been recognized for publishing articles on controversial issues related to the Jewish community in Chicago, especially when it comes to discrimination.
This independent publication is not a profitable business at all. All the editorial, advertising, and design related tasks are done in-house. Plus, the money to publish the newspaper comes mainly from syndicated journalists and donors –mainly from the Jewish community.
The Kansas City Jewish Chronicle
Founded in 1920, the Kansas City Jewish Chronicle is another important newspaper located in the American Midwest. This weekly publication provides readers with information related to global news and local opinions. Unlike the Chicago Jewish Star, this is a paid newspaper available for purchase at its office every Wednesday. However, subscribers can have it mailed to their places each week as well.
This business was bought in 2010 by two Jews living in Kansas (Steve Rose and David Small) from News-Press and Gazette Company of St. Joseph, Mo. These businessmen are the eight owners of the paper, however, this is the second time the Rose family owns the newspaper and the first time a Small is the president of the company.
The newspaper uses a wide range of sources and the shared information includes stories written by its own staff. There are many local rabbis and professionals in different fields who also belong to Kansas’ Jewish community and write columns on topics of local interest. For international affairs, the editorial staff publishes reports from different nations overseas.
The Detroit Jewish News
Serving Detroit’s community since 1942, The Detroit Jewish News works as a community newspaper distributed every week. Considered a pro- Zionist newspaper, this publication offers Detroiters a wide range of engaging, educational and unique readings. Always advocating for positions that aim to strengthen the unity and continuity of the Jewish community.
Unlike other businesses, this newspaper goes beyond the mere fact of being a weekly publication, it has a foundation dedicated to operating as a nonprofit in the city of Detroit, called Detroit Jewish News Foundation. Funds are mostly collected through readers who can buy subscriptions from 3 to 12 months online.
This newspaper focuses on topics related to the Jewish community in Detroit, making small Jewish business visible and sharing columns on both national and international issues related to Jewish affairs especially in the Middle East.
Owned by the Atlanta Jewish times, the Detroit Jewish News points itself as one of the largest Jewish newspapers in North America. Being awarded multiple prizes and honors, this newspaper is probably one of the most important Jewish publications that can be found in the Midwest.
* Featured Image courtesy of Bored_Grrl at Flickr.com