Arlen Specter, A Fiercely Independent American Original

    Arlen Specter tenaciously hewed to his own path. He was ubiquitous in Philadelphia, but never followed conventional wisdom, even when it came to his Jewish identity.

    Warm and 'Utterly Jewish,' Nora Ephron Left Us Way Too Soon

    For all her acerbic humor, writer Nora Ephron was warm. For all her Jewish disconnection, she felt utterly Jewish. Her stunning work will outlive her, writes Abigail Pogrebin.

    Adam Yauch and the Adolescent Sublime

    It’s impossible to talk about the Beastie Boys without talking about the group. Eitan Kensky writes that he connected with Adam Yauch as an individual in film.

    Maynard Wishner Embodied Yiddishkeit

    The Jewish community lost a towering figure with the December 19 death, at age 88, of Maynard Wishner. From his early years as a child prodigy in Chicago’s Yiddish Theater to his later years as president of several prominent national Jewish organizations, including the American Jewish Committee, the Jewish Community Relations Advisory Council, and the umbrella group now known as the Jewish Federations of North America, Wishner brought with him special talents, warmth, vision and leadership.

    ?Jew-ish?: When he traveled Christopher Hitchens made a point of visiting local synagogues in communities that had little or no Jewish community left.

    A ‘Non-Jewish Jew,’ Hitchens Welcomed Finding He Was Jewish–But Not Zionism

    Christopher Hitchens later-in-life discovery that he was Jewish did nothing to change his views on Zionism or Israel, The Nation’s managing editor writes in this appreciation.