Steven M. Cohen

Start Birthright With Younger Teens

If Birthright’s goal is to encourage Jewish young people to build a relationship with Israel, why start in college? Steven M. Cohen says younger teens might get even more out of the program.

Leonard Fein

Leonard Fein Took Us Beyond False Dichotomies

Leonard Fein’s most enduring legacy may be his rejection of dualism: the idea that Jews must choose between assertiveness and compassion, between tribalism and universalism.

American Jewry Loses Middle as Orthodox and Unaffiliated Grow

The numbers in the Pew study tell a story familiar from other religions, Steven M. Cohen writes. The Orthodox and the unaffiliated are growing. The middle is shrinking.

Continuity Beyond Communal Walls

With all the critique leveled at Jewish institutions these days, it’s worth recalling that congregations and Jewish community centers are extraordinarily successful in appealing to a particular segment of American Jews. Of those who are in-married with school-age children, well over 80% are affiliated with a Jewish institution, generally a synagogue or JCC. Once parents give birth to a Jewish child, the chances that they will find Jewish friends and come into the orbit of conventional organized Jewry are indeed very high.

Read Boston Study on Intermarriage With Caution

The recently released 2005 Boston Community Study reported some seemingly startling findings with potentially powerful implications for the future of American Jews. It reported that 60% of children in intermarried homes are being raised as Jews: “The majority of intermarried households with children are raising those children as Jews. Doing so is near-universal among Jewish women in interfaith relationships and somewhat less so for Jewish men.”

Gender Bias Is a Fact of Communal Life

A by-now widely reported accident took place at Wye Plantation last week. The Jewish People Policy Planning Institute convened a meeting of Jewish organizational leaders to discuss the future of the Jewish people — but hardly any women leaders were invited, hardly any were expected to participate before dozens of Jews sent protest letters to the

Poll: Attachment of U.S. Jews To Israel Falls in Past 2 Years

The attachment of American Jews to Israel has weakened measurably in the last two years, a recent survey demonstrates, continuing a long-term trend visible during the past decade and a half.The weakening is apparent in almost every measure of Jewish connection to Israel except for interest in travel to Israel, which showed a slight uptick, and a

Charles Liebman Shed Light on Jewish Culture

Charles Liebman, widely regarded as the pre-eminent social scientist of Jews and Judaism in the latter third of the 20th century, died last week in Petah Tikva at age 69. A political scientist by discipline, his dozen books and scores of scholarly articles deftly interpret the culture of Judaism and the Jewish people in the United States, Israel

Terrorism Stokes New Set of Fears Among Jews: Poll

Alarmed by the growing specter of terrorism abroad and at home, American Jews report feeling high levels of anxiety and fear of further attacks — on their nation, their community and themselves. The September 11 attacks, ongoing violence in Israel and reports of antisemitic threats worldwide have combined to create a widespread feeling

Jews Hardline, Yet Detached, In New Survey

More than two years of violence in Israel and the territories have hardened American Jews’ attitudes toward the Palestinians, a new survey shows. The survey also found strong majorities backing the Sharon government’s tough anti-terrorist measures and opposing American pressure to moderate Israeli actions. Fully two-thirds of respondents say