Arts & Culture


A Shanda in Shpittsburgh!

By Jeffrey Griggs

What makes a hero? Is it his cape or his capabilities? Or is it simply enough to “do good,” to help those around you in times of need? As adults, we might not remember the significance of these questions, but for a child, they are paramount. In answer to the call, Agent Emes has returned to confront these questions and more as he tacklesRead More


Family Honor in Distress

By Naomi Myrvaagnes

Jacob has settled down at last. Prosperous in middle age, blessed with four wives and 12 sons, he has escaped from his exploitive father-in-law, made peace with his estranged brother and returned to his native land, the land the Almighty promised to him and his descendants. A herdsman, Jacob has pitched his tents and set up hisRead More


Remembering A ‘Happy Jewish Spirit’

By Masha Leon

“In 1993, when we first established Jewish Life Network, we sought to create a foundation that would help catalyze a renaissance in the non-Orthodox Jewish World,” Michael Steinhardt told the mostly youthful audience at the October 28 Makor/Steinhardt Center of the 92nd Street Y’s memorial concert to “Celebrate the Life of JonathanRead More


See Dick. See Dick Kvell. Kvell, Dick, Kvell.

By Suzan Sherman

Yiddish With Dick and Jane By Ellis Weiner and Barbara Davilman Little, Brown, 112 pages, $14.95. ——The Dick and Jane primers left an indelible imprint on generations of Americans — myself among them — who first experienced reading inside their pages. Dick and his sister, Jane, epitomized the fresh-faced, immaculate and well-behavedRead More


The Buddha From Brooklyn A Lama Talks About Enlightenment... With a Yiddish Twang

By Jay Michaelson

You think you know the story: A Jewish kid from Brooklyn, N.Y., goes off to India for several years, meditating on a mountaintop. He transforms himself into a new person, changing his name from Jeff Miller to Surya Das, abandoning his jeans for saffron robes, and now he spends all day expounding sweetly on peace and enlightenment.SuryaRead More


Lighting a Yahrzeit Candle, And Cursing the Darkness

By Jenni Person

‘Don’t forget you need to light the candle,” my mother responded when I asked her how she was planning on coping come Monday. I wanted to know what she was going to do, how she was going to spend the day. I was concerned about her — but I was also feeling completely at a loss myself. And the truth was, even as I planned aRead More


Film Examines Court Jews Who Dominated Basketball

By Ethan Porter

In Miami there are men whose memories burn with images of athletic glory long-relegated to private collections of black-and-white news reels — images of swooping majestic passes back and forth, baskets swishing with grace, running up and down a court of giants. These men possess the story of how Jewish Americans, most of them the children ofRead More


Numbers Game: Red Sox Win, Kerry Whiffs

By Ami Eden

George W. Bush played a hunch in the late winter of 2003.Against the advice of many intelligence, military and diplomatic experts, the president ordered the invasion of Iraq, convinced that the United States would uncover weapons of mass destruction, be welcomed by the native population and transform the country into a democracy.Seven monthsRead More


A Confused Hanukkah

A Confused Hanukkah By Jon Koons With Illustrations by S.D. Schindler Dutton Children’s Books ——-Hanukkah is fast approaching in the Village of Chelm, a very simple town with some very simple people (“some might even call them fools”). Meanwhile, the rabbi has disappeared, and even the wise men can’t remember how to celebrate.Read More


Mrs. Greenberg’s Messy Hanukkah

Mrs. Greenberg’s Messy Hanukkah By Linda Glaser With Illustrations by Nancy Cote Albert Whitman & Company ——It’s the first night of Hanukkah, but Mama tells Rachel they won’t be having company — or making latkes — until next week. No company? No latkes? Rachel can’t wait! She goes next door to Mrs. Greenberg’s house, andRead More





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  • 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.
  • Why are peace activists getting beat up in Tel Aviv? http://jd.fo/s4YsG
  • Backstreet's...not back.
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