Many friends, students, and colleagues have encouraged me to write this book, and without them I would not have had the courage to do so. But first and foremost it was my wife, Susan, who engaged me in a dialogue about my work from the day I started to practise in Rosh Haayin. It was she who suggested that I keep a written record of random observations over the years, and who has helped me throughout the many periods of despair every worker in the community experiences. Sue's own contributions to the book have been many, from criticism of my linguistic style to bibliographical research. She has added historical analysis, many erudite references, and has also tolerated my wordprocessor's presence in our bedroom.
Many years ago, Dr. Phyllis Palgi suggested that I keep full records of traditional medical practices that I came across in my clinical work. Prof. Daniel Shimshoni has been most generous with his time over the years in discussing the ever-changing social and political scene in Rosh Haayin. Carole (Shira, to us in Rosh Haayin) Zimbrolt and Kalia Cohen discussed their theses with me in detail. Rachel Feilden was an excellent correspondent. The staff of the McMaster University Libraries, where I spent a sabbatical year that provided me with the time to start writing this book, spared no effort to be helpful. The staff at the New York archives of the American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee deserves the same thanks, and I also owe a special word of thanks to Prof. Walter Rosser of the Department of Family Medicine at McMaster who made my trip to New York possible. Also at McMaster, Drs. Charles Roland, Maurice Mishkell, and Bill Seidelman discussed many aspects of my research and made most useful criticisms of some early drafts.
To all these I am thankful, but the final work is my responsibility alone. hould I have misinterpreted my patients or misrepresented their feelings, I hope they forgive me.