Laurie Gwen Shapiro


The Syrupy Tale of How Jews Invented Kedem and Modern America

By Laurie Gwen Shapiro

The Syrupy Tale of How Jews Invented Kedem and Modern America
How did that sugary Manischewitz get to your table? It started 100 years ago with Kedem in New York. Or maybe with Thoreau or Sonic Youth. Here’s the secret history of the sweet stuff.Read More


The Man Who Can Make a Cheetah Jump

By Laurie Gwen Shapiro

The Man Who Can Make a Cheetah Jump
Dan Kainen has dabbled in laser light shows and designed T-shirts. But now, lenticular art has made the son of a prominent Jewish artist an unqualified success story.Read More


Into Wilderness of Errol

By Laurie Gwen Shapiro

Into Wilderness of Errol
Because Errol Morris believes in the power of eye contact, he invented unpatented machines called the Interrotron and the Megatron that allow his documentary subjects to look directly at his face on a projected screen while he is in another room. This unusual method lends a startling intensity and intimacy to his mesmerizing films. It would sure be nice to borrow one of these fantastic devices to interview the country’s master interviewer. But he is on a national tour for his book “A Wilderness of Error”; plus, he’s planning a trip to North Carolina to attend Jeffrey MacDonald’s evidentiary hearing in federal court, which is being held on yontif — something that, Morris confides, makes him feel both irritated and guilty. So, alas, I am reduced to a phone interview.Read More


Mr. Tropper's Novels

By Laurie Gwen Shapiro

Here’s a brief cheat sheet on Jonathan Tropper’s literary oeuvre.Read More


Jonathan Tropper Never Gave Up on Dream

By Laurie Gwen Shapiro

Jonathan Tropper Never Gave Up on Dream
Jonathan Tropper grew up playing piano at a Modern Orthodox summer camp in the Poconos. No one thought he’d turn out to be the literary Next Big Thing.Read More



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