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Joseph Dorinson

Professor of History

B.A., M.Phil., Columbia University


l85l East 26 Street Brooklyn
New York 11229-2437

Tel : 718-375-3278  (Home)
       718-488-1191  (Work)
Fax: 718-488-1086

Chairman (1985-1997) & Professor, History Department, Long Island University: Brooklyn Campus, 1 University Plaza, Brooklyn, N.Y., 11201.

Began work at LIU 9/66. Tenure granted 9/72.

Member, Community School Board #22, Brooklyn 1989-1996. Community Member, Community Planning Board #15, June 2010-present

President, Danforth Associates of New York 1986-1989

Formerly Assistant Dean, LIU School of Business, Director, Guided Studies, LIU, Lecturer, Kean College of New Jersey, Columbia College, Lehman College-CUNY, Borough of Manhattan Community College-CUNY, College of Staten Island, CUNY, St. Francis College of Brooklyn

Courses Taught: History of World Civilizations, Western Civilization, Surveys of American History, The Colonial Era in America, American Social History (introduced) History of Sports (introduced), History of Islam (introduced), City as Melting Pot (graduate), School & Society (graduate), Sociology, Anthropology, Political Science, Great Books (Colloquium), Social Science & Media (honors), Developmental Reading, Culture & Society in Humor (introduced), Psychohistory (introduced), Speech,Sociology of Communication, Urban Politics (graduate), History of New York City (graduate), The President and the Indian (capstone), The Monkey (interdisciplinary), War & Peace, Primates and Us (experimental interdisciplinary course: History and Anthropology), Film & History (capstone), Political Humor (capstone), The Holocaust (introduced), The 1960s (introduced), The Great Depression and World War II: History on Film.


Chair, Writing Across the Curriculum, Chair, Athletic Policies, University Faculty Senate, Treasurer & Executive Board, Faculty Union, AFT Local 3998, Judicial Review, Faculty Elections, Writing Across the Curriculum Task Force, Newton Awards


African-American Sports Heroes, Brooklyn, Humor Studies, Jewish History, Popular Culture, Russian Immigration, Sports History


  • “Breaking the Slump: Laughing Your Troubles Away,” in Zenia S. DaSilva & Michael D’Innocernzo, editors, 1935: The Reality and the Promise (2016)

  •  “Borscht Belt Basketball,” 1.4 Jewish Sports Heritage (Winter 2016), 11-15.

  • Co-author with Wang Zhen, “Seventy Years Later; China-USA Relations,” Jiefang Daily (Dec. 8. 2015)

  • Kvetching and Shpritzing: Jewish Humor In American Popular Culture (2015)

  • “A Stack of Baseball Cards: Some Thoughts on Jews and the Roles They Have Played in the Major Leagues” in Ari. F.  Sclar, editor, Beyond Stereotypes: American Jews in Sports, 2014)

  •  “Cal Abrams,”

  •  “Joan Rivers: ‘Yenta-in Chief,’” The Jewish Week (Sept. 9, 2014, http://www.thejewishweek. com/news/newyork/yente-chief)

  •  "Up from the Borscht Belt: Jerry Lewis, Jewish Genius—an Historical Review” Israeli Journal of Humor Research 5 (June 2014)

  •  “Something to Cheer About: Paul Robeson, Monte Irvin, and Larry Doby” Black Ball: A Negro Leagues Journal 6:1 (2013)

  •   “Jackie Robinson Revisited,” Black Ball 5:2 (Fall 2012)

  •  “Climbing Jacob’s Ladder: The Collaboration of Eugene O’Neill and Paul Robeson” in Eileen J. Herrmann & Robert M. Dowling, editors, Bohemians, Radicals, Progressives, and Lefties: Eugene O’Neill and His Contemporaries (2010)

  • “Yankee from Olympus: Babe Ruth and Baseball in the Bronx” in Robert N. Keane, ed. Baseball and the Sultan of Swat (2008)

  • “Jackie Robinson’s 10-Year Odyssey,” in Black Ball 1:1 (Spring 2008)

  • Poosh’Em Up, Tony! Italian-Americans in Baseball,” in James Vlasich, ed. Horsehide, Pigskin, Oval Tracks, and Apple Pie…(2006)

  • “Jews & Baseball: A Love Story” in Jewish Sports Legends: A Study Guide (2005)

  • "Terence Malley Remembered" Nine 13:2 (Spring 2005)

  • “Frank Sinatra: Pride, Passion, and Politics,” in S. Pugliese, ed. Frank Sinatra: History, Identity, and Italian American Culture (2004)

  • “New York City” with G. Lankevich in Peter Rollins, ed. The Columbia Companion on Film & History (2004)

  • “Milton Berle,“ The Scribner Encyclopedia of American Lives Vol.6 (2004)

  •  “A Life Worth Living: The Jackie Robinson Biopic” in John Manbeck & Robert Singers, eds. The Brooklyn Film (2003)

  • “Lenny Bruce” and “Jerry Lewis,” The Scribner Encyclopedia of American Lives: The 1960s (2003)

  • “Jackie Robinson” The Scribner Encyclopedia of American Lives: Sports Figures (2002)

  • Co-editor with William Pencak, Paul Robeson: Essays on His Life and Legacy with William Pencak (2001)

  • "Danny Kaye: Toomler" in Jews of Brooklyn (2001)

  • "Heroes and Heroines in Sports“ and "Sportswriters" in Encyclopedia of American Popular Culture

  • “From Soup to Nuts: Laughter in the Suburbs—Alan King and Billy Crystal” in Joanne Krieg & Natalie Naylor, eds. Nassau County…(2000)

  • "'Hammerin” Hank Is Back” Long Island Jewish World (January 21-27. 2000)

  • “My Hero, Hank” Op-Ed, New York Daily News (January 15, 2000)

  • Co-editor with William Pencak, Paul Robeson: A Symposium edited with William Pencak (1998)

  • Co-editor with Joram Warmund, Jackie Robinson: Race, Sports and the American Dream (1998)

  • “From Jack Johnson to Muhammad Ali: Black Heroes in American Sports” Journal of Popular Culture 31:3 (Spring 1998)

  • “Marianne Moore & The Brooklyn Dodgers,” in Natalie Naylor, editor, Long Island Women: Activists and Innovators, (1998)

  • Jackie Robinson: The New York Times Newspaper in Education Curriculum Guide (1997)

  • “Jackie’s a Hero Now--But He Wasn’t Always” Op-Ed, The New York Daily News (March 28, 1997)

  • “The Enigma of Babe Ruth” Nine 4:2 (Spring 1996), 387-388

  • Co-Editor with Dennis Carpenter, Anyone Here A Sailor?: Popular Entertainment and the Navy (1994)

  • "The Educational Alliance: An Institutional Study in Americanization and Acculturation" in Michael D'Innocenzo & Joseph P. Sirefman, eds., Immigration and Ethnicity... (1992)

  • "The Suburbanization of Brooklyn; Persistence Without Plan" in Barbara Kelly, Long Island: The Suburban Experience (1990)

  • "Brooklyn: The Elusive Image," Long Island Historical Journal 1:2 (Spring 1989)

  • "Danny Kaye! Hollywood Toomler" Genesis 2 (Spring 1988)

  • Co-Author with Joseph Boskin, "Racial and Ethnic Humor" in Lawrence E. Mintz, ed., Humor in America: Topics and Genres (1988)

  • Co-Author with Joseph Boskin, "Ethnic Humor: Subversion and Survival" in Arthur P. Dudden, ed. American Humor (l987)

  • “The Jew as Comic: Lenny Bruce, Mel Brooks, and Woody Allen" in Avner Ziv, ed., Jewish Humor (l986)

  • "The Gold-Dust Twins of Marginal Humor: Blacks & Jews," Maledicta, 8 (l985)

  • "Coney Island" NAHO (l983)

  • "Jewish Politics: The Art of Survival," in Joseph Roucek & Bernard Eisenberg , eds., Ethnic Politics (l982)

  • "Lenny Bruce: A Jewish Humorist in Babylon," Jewish Currents 35:2 (February l98l)

  • "Jewish Humor: Mechanism for Defense; Cutting Edge of Cultural Affirmation," The Journal of Psychohistory 8:4 (Spring l98l)

    Book Reviews: 

  • “Greedy, Cowardly and Weak: Hollywood’s Jewish Stereotypes,” The Journal of Popular Culture 43: 3 (May 2010)

  • The Father of Baseball: A Biography of Hnery Chadwick,“ The Journal of Popular Culture 42, 1 (Feb. 2009)

  • "The Bronx—No Thonks?” H-PCAACA (2007)

  • "Press Box Red," American Communist History 3:2 (2004)

  • “Why the French Love Jerry Lewis,” Humor: International Journal of Humor (2004)

  • “American Jewish Comedians,” Jewish Currents (November-December 2002), 36-37

  • "Inventing Jerry Lewis: A Review," Humor: International Journal of Humor (November 2001)

  • "Raising Reds: A Review," Science & Society; 65 (Summer 2001)

  • “The Bronx: Lost, Found and Remembered 1935-1975,” The Journal of American Culture

  • “Tender Comrades…” Left History 

  •  “Let It Ring” Jewish Currents (November 1999)

  • "USA’s Fascist Future?”, Jewish Currents (June 1998)

  • “A Bundle of Contradictions” Film & History 26: 1-4 (1996)

  • “Ethnicity and Sport in North American History and Culture,” Journal of American Culture 19:1 (Spring 1996)

  • “Orson Welles: Destined for Destruction” Film & History (Summer, 1996)

  • "Is It to Laugh?" Jewish Currents (March l990)

  • "A Whole New Ball Game," History Reviews of New Books 17:4 (Summer 1989)

  • "Food for Thought: Jewish Wry" Jewish Currents (June 1988)

  • "Hooray for Rosten & Yiddish," Jewish Currents (July-August l985)

  • "No Laughing Matter..." The Journal of Psychohistory: l2:4 (Spring l985)

  • "Make 'em Laugh; Make 'em Think," The Journal of Psychohistory l0:4 (Spring l983)

  • "America the Nightclub," Jewish Currents (June l982)

Lectures and Presentations

Conference Director: “Jackie Robinson: Race, Sports, and the American Dream,” Long Island University: Brooklyn, April 3-5, 1997.

Conference Director: “Paul Robeson: Life and Legacy” at Long Island University: Brooklyn, February 28, 1998.

Conference Director: “Brooklyn: A City Apart--100 Years of Amalgamation”, Long Island University, October 21-23, 1998

Conference and Co-Director and Keynote Speaker: "The History and Cultural Significance of Basketball,” St. Francis College, November 2-3, 2001

Road Scholars/Elder-Hostels: “Jewish Humor,” Educational Alliance, October 1997, October 1998, July 1999, July 2000; "Hank Greenberg & Jackie Robinson," July 2000;  “Jews  in Popular Culture,” Block & Hexter, August 2006, “New York City History” Block & Hexter, July 2007, “Catskill Comedy” Kislak, August 2008, June 2009, Block & Hexter, July 2009. “New York City History.” New Yorker Hotel, 2009-10; “Where Comedy Went to School.” Block & Hester, August 2011

Florida Atlantic University at Boca Raton, Lifelong Learning: “When Comedy Went to School.” Jan. 8, 2015, “Hank Greenberg, Joe DiMaggio and Jackie Robinson: Baseball’s Ethnic Heroes,” Jan. 14, 2016

Speakers in the Humanities Program: New York Council for the Humanities

“Political Humor: A Look back in Anger Mixed with Mirth,” November 2008 to September, 2015

“Where Comedy Went to School,” December 2009 to Sept. 1915 when program ended.