This concluding chapter summarizes the book's findings on the history of the entry of Jews into the medical and legal professions. During the late Victorian age and the Edwardian era, it was possible for a few Jews from patrician or wealthy merchant families to rise to the top of the Bar, or the front rank of the medical profession, while retaining a Jewish identity. Between the two world wars, English society was much less open than in the late Victorian and Edwardian years. This was a time of heavy unemployment and economic malaise, disfigured by sharpening antisemitism which did not abate until a decade after the Second World War. During the 1950s and 1960s, there was a predominance of Jewish doctors over Jewish lawyers in England, but by the 1990s this situation had been reversed and Jewish lawyers were in a majority. Since the 1990s, there has been a decline generally in the number of applicants for medical schools in England. Among these professionals today, there is on the one hand an imperceptible drift by some out of the community, without pressure from the necessity for radical assimilation, and a switch by another group of professionals from the Orthodoxy of their fathers to Reform Judaism, which they find more compatible with the daily rhythm of their careers.
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