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Movement that originated in U.S. Judaism in the 1920s. It regards Judaism only as a specific human culture, rejects the tradition of a transcendent deity who made a covenant with his chosen people, and does not accept the Bible as the inspired word of God. Its principles, as enunciated by Mordecai Menahem Kaplan, are based on the belief that Jews can live a distinctively Jewish cultural life without being religiously observant. Reconstructionists today number about 60,000.
This entry comes from Encyclopædia Britannica Concise. For the full entry on Reconstructionism, visit Britannica.com.
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