David Kaufmann


The Silver Age of Rock and Roll

By David Kaufmann

The Silver Age of Rock and Roll
The new release from indie rockers Silver Jews takes us back to the early days before they got big. Their songs are messy affairs, captured on a small hand-held tape player.Read More


Talented Life of Diane Arbus Reconsidered

By David Kaufmann

Talented Life of Diane Arbus Reconsidered
Diane Arbus’s disturbing and spectacular gallery of photographs were of a piece with the rest of her disorderly life that ended in suicide, William Todd Schultz writes in a new book.Read More


'After Weegee' Defends Photojournalism

By David Kaufmann

'After Weegee' Defends Photojournalism
It’s tempting to see the generous and imaginative essays of Daniel Morris’s ‘After Weegee’ as an argument that yes, Virginia, there is a Jewish photography.Read More


Channeling the Power of Memory

By David Kaufmann

When Michael Meyer published his classic book, “The Origins of the Modern Jew,” more than 40 years ago, that Jew turned out to be German. Because of the fitful and disastrously unsuccessful nature of Jewish emancipation, German Jews confronted modernity with an existential and intellectual intensity perhaps unequalled in the West. In order to enjoy the promised fruits of progress, they had to become citizens of an increasingly secular state and learn to identify with that odd mystical entity, the German nation. They needed to give up their communal ties. In short, they had to figure out new ways of being Jewish.Read More


The Reciprocal Antagonist

By David Kaufmann

The Reciprocal Antagonist
The Silver Jews — one of the most durable indie bands of the early 1990s — have a problem with their name. When the band’s founder, David Berman, came up with it, he didn’t know what it meant, so he fabricated all sorts of stories to explain it. While Europeans want to talk about the name, English-speaking fans frequently try to avoid it. They spell it “Joos,” in order to steer clear of writing things like, “The Jews played a great set last night.” The name clearly makes people uncomfortable.Read More



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