Allison T. Hoffman


The Journalist as Memoirist: A Modern Tale

By Allison T. Hoffman

For journalists trained to bear dispassionate witness to history as other people make it, the terrain of memoir is a treacherous one: Memory, they fear, can be a quicksand of hazy reminiscence and wishful thinking into which objective facts disappear, never to be recovered. Reporters traffic in verifiable truth, and instinctively recoil from theRead More


Young Activists Join Economic Lions at Davos Parley

By Allison T. Hoffman

Greenspan, Friedman, Fischer, Reich, Rubin, Stiglitz, Summers, Wolfensohn: For years, the single-name figures of the economic world have been men, many of them Jewish, almost all of them weighing in on issues of globalization and economic development from university chairs, institutional headquarters or government departments.But facedRead More


The Women We Know

By Allison T. Hoffman

They are the women we all know: A Florida bubbe battling with her headstrong granddaughter. A good Jewish girl looking for a nice Jewish husband. Three artists — a painter, a singer and a filmmaker — all questioning the assumptions of their faith. An old woman, a Russian immigrant, rediscovering her youth; another, alone in a nursing home,Read More


Cincinnati Community Helps Paint Ohio Red

By Allison T. Hoffman

CINCINNATI — On Tuesday, none of the 80 rabbinical students at Hebrew Union College offered to lead morning services. Instead of starting their day at the school’s sanctuary, where one of the stained glass windows depicts the Ten Commandments over the American flag, most found themselves at campaign hot spots.By the time the polls openedRead More


AAbuzz With Bugs

By Allison T. Hoffman

Swat, squash, slap, smash, smack: Faced with the high whine of flying invaders, teeming masses of tiny creatures or the sickly sheen of hard brown insect shells, we’ll happily whack them, fumigate them, chemical-bomb them, even flash-freeze them. Never mind that we may share a common protean ancestor with the creepy-crawlies, or thatRead More






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    • “The Black community was resistant to the Jewish community coming into the neighborhood — at first.” Watch this video about how a group of gardeners is rebuilding trust between African-Americans and Jews in Detroit.
    • "I am a Jewish woman married to a non-Jewish man who was raised Catholic, but now considers himself a “common-law Jew.” We are raising our two young children as Jews. My husband's parents are still semi-practicing Catholics. When we go over to either of their homes, they bow their heads, often hold hands, and say grace before meals. This is an especially awkward time for me, as I'm uncomfortable participating in a non-Jewish religious ritual, but don't want his family to think I'm ungrateful. It's becoming especially vexing to me now that my oldest son is 7. What's the best way to handle this situation?" http://jd.fo/b4ucX What would you do?
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    • "Like many Jewish people around the world, I observed Shabbat this weekend. I didn’t light candles or recite Hebrew prayers; I didn’t eat challah or matzoh ball soup or brisket. I spent my Shabbat marching for justice for Eric Garner of Staten Island, Michael Brown of Ferguson, and all victims of police brutality."
    • Happy #NationalDogDay! To celebrate, here's a little something from our archives:
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    • "If the only thing viewers knew about the Jews was what they saw on The Simpsons they — and we — would be well served." What's your favorite Simpsons' moment?
    • "One uncle of mine said, 'I came to America after World War II and I hitchhiked.' And Robin said, 'I waited until there was a 747 and a kosher meal.'" Watch Billy Crystal's moving tribute to Robin Williams at last night's #Emmys:
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    • "I feel great sorrow about the fact that you decided to return the honor and recognition that you so greatly deserve." Rivka Ben-Pazi, who got Dutchman Henk Zanoli recognized as a "Righteous Gentile," has written him an open letter.
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    • From The Daily Show to Lizzy Caplan, here's your Who's Jew guide to the 2014 #Emmys. Who are you rooting for?
    • “People at archives like Yad Vashem used to consider genealogists old ladies in tennis shoes. But they have been impressed with our work on indexing documents. Now they are lining up to work with us." This year's Jewish Genealogical Societies conference took place in Utah. We got a behind-the-scenes look:
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