Steven M. Cohen


Leonard Fein Took Us Beyond False Dichotomies

By Steven M. Cohen

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.Read More


American Jewry Loses Middle as Orthodox and Unaffiliated Grow

By Steven M. Cohen

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.Read More


Continuity Beyond Communal Walls

By Steven M. Cohen

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 More


Gender Bias Is a Fact of Communal Life

By Steven M. Cohen and Shaul Kelner

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 theRead More


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

By Steven M. Cohen

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 aRead 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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