The Schmooze

A Walker in Brooklyn

Crossposted From Under the Fig Tree

In the American Jewish imagination, the curiously named neighborhood known as East New York, Brooklyn, along with that of adjacent Brownsville, are most often associated with the nefarious activities of Murder, Inc. From its headquarters in a candy store at the intersection of Livonia and Saratoga Streets, this Brooklyn gang engaged in loan-sharking, racketeering and murder-for hire, bringing shame and notoriety to the Jewish community.

More benignly, East New York also figured in Alfred Kazin’s lyrical and evocative memoir, “A Walker in the City.” The end of the line, quite literally, it was the place where the subway quit, the place for those “who lived still beyond.” To get from Manhattan to East New York, Kazin writes, was a matter of a “long pent-up subway ride.”

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A Walker in Brooklyn

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