Harvey Sheldon s History of Jewish Comedy reveals the Jewish contributions to American comedy. What made the Jewish comedians so popular with American audiences? Comedy has always been a distinguishing characteristic of the Jewish people. It is the Jewish experience in America which breeds comedy. For generations, American audiences have sought to escape the struggles of day to day life by turning to laughter as a main source of relief and to Jewish comedians. What made the Jewish comedians so popular with American audiences? Why do so many Jews go into Comedy? (85 % have been Jewish) What is funny about the Jewish experience in America? What are the roots of comedy in Jewish culture? What has made the Jewish contribution to American comedy so extensive? Why have American audiences, for more than a century, responded to the Jewish gift of laughter? A one stop reference source answering those questions with biographies of Jewish comedians and a comprehensive history of Jewish comedy.