Lawrence Grossman


Grant's Anti-Semitism—And Tolerance

By Lawrence Grossman

Grant's Anti-Semitism—And Tolerance
Gen. Ulysses Grant issued a famed order expelling Jews, but as president appointed more Jews than any of his predecessors. Jonathan Sarna deciphers the myth and reality in his new book.Read More


Preaching to the Converters

By Lawrence Grossman

Preaching to the Converters
David Ellenson and Daniel Gordis write that ambiguities in Jewish law and complexities of modern life have combined to make the topic of conversion a tricky business.Read More


How Jews Became the People of the Talmud

By Lawrence Grossman

Basic to Jewish religious teaching is the distinction between “written” Torah — Scripture, the Jewish Bible — and so-called “oral” Torah, a diffuse tradition of legal and homiletic rabbinic commentary that over the centuries has interpreted and elaborated the written corpus and applied it to shifting social, economic and political realities.Read More


Modern Orthodoxy's Human Pillar

By Lawrence Grossman

Modern Orthodoxy's Human Pillar
The father of Modern Orthodoxy, Joseph Soloveitchik, may have saved the movement from being swallowed by Conservative Judaism. Since his death, the movement is in danger again.Read More


Love Me, Love Me Not

By Lawrence Grossman

No, cynical reader, “Philosemitism in History” is not a very short book. And no, hopeful reader, it will not calm Jewish fears of anti-Semitism by showing how much Jews have been esteemed and admired over the years. To the contrary, it might make Jews worry more, since it demonstrates the ambiguity of philosemitism both as concept and as social reality. Not all expressions of love for Jews are necessarily benign.Read More






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  • "We will do what we must to protect our people. We have that right. We are not less deserving of life and quiet than anyone else. No more apologies."
  • "Woody Allen should have quit while he was ahead." Ezra Glinter's review of "Magic in the Moonlight": http://jd.fo/f4Q1Q
  • Jon Stewart responds to his critics: “Look, obviously there are many strong opinions on this. But just merely mentioning Israel or questioning in any way the effectiveness or humanity of Israel’s policies is not the same thing as being pro-Hamas.”
  • "My bat mitzvah party took place in our living room. There were only a few Jewish kids there, and only one from my Sunday school class. She sat in the corner, wearing the right clothes, asking her mom when they could go." The latest in our Promised Lands series — what state should we visit next?
  • Former Israeli National Security Advisor Yaakov Amidror: “A cease-fire will mean that anytime Hamas wants to fight it can. Occupation of Gaza will bring longer-term quiet, but the price will be very high.” What do you think?
  • Should couples sign a pre-pregnancy contract, outlining how caring for the infant will be equally divided between the two parties involved? Just think of it as a ketubah for expectant parents:
  • Many #Israelis can't make it to bomb shelters in time. One of them is Amos Oz.
  • According to Israeli professor Mordechai Kedar, “the only thing that can deter terrorists, like those who kidnapped the children and killed them, is the knowledge that their sister or their mother will be raped."
  • Why does ultra-Orthodox group Agudath Israel of America receive its largest donation from the majority owners of Walmart? Find out here: http://jd.fo/q4XfI
  • Woody Allen on the situation in #Gaza: It's “a terrible, tragic thing. Innocent lives are lost left and right, and it’s a horrible situation that eventually has to right itself.”
  • "Mark your calendars: It was on Sunday, July 20, that the momentum turned against Israel." J.J. Goldberg's latest analysis on Israel's ground operation in Gaza:
  • What do you think?
  • "To everyone who is reading this article and saying, “Yes, but… Hamas,” I would ask you to just stop with the “buts.” Take a single moment and allow yourself to feel this tremendous loss. Lay down your arms and grieve for the children of Gaza."
  • Professor Dan Markel, 41 years old, was found shot and killed in his Tallahassee home on Friday. Jay Michaelson can't explain the death, just grieve for it.
  • Employees complained that the food they received to end the daily fast during the holy month of Ramadan was not enough (no non-kosher food is allowed in the plant). The next day, they were dismissed.
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