Arts & Culture


An American Journalist’s Hasidic Tale

By Saul Austerlitz

The Rabbi of 84th Street: The Extraordinary Life of Haskel Besser By Warren Kozak HarperCollins, 200 pages, $24.95. * * *Since the era of the Baal Shem Tov and the first Hasidic leaders, one of the primary attractions of Hasidism as a movement has been the Hasidic story. A little shaggy-dog — a bit rambling, sure, but reliablyRead More


The Peculiarly Jewish Predicament

By John Felstiner

Little Men: Novellas and Stories By Gerald Shapiro Columbus Ohio State University Press, 219 pages, $29.95. * * *‘Just tell me — is it good for the Jews?” The precariousness of Diaspora existence got turned against Philip Roth when “Goodbye Columbus and Other Stories” (1958) seemed to betray nasty Jewish foibles to America’sRead More


Setting Yiddishkeit To Mambo, Metal And Surf

By Jay Michaelson

Meshugga Beach Party: Sixteen Songs of the Chosen Surfers (Halakahiki Records) The Makkabees: Volume Aleph (self-released) Yiddishe Cup: Meshugeneh Mambo (Yiddishe Cup)* * *There are some who believe that authentic Jewish genius lies in the moral and legal codes of our ancestors; others, in the monotheistic impulse, or in the faithRead More


Waters of Contention

By Marjorie Ingall

Not long ago, I would have told you that the odds of my ever visiting a mikveh were approximately the same as those of George Bush tongue-kissing Dick Cheney. The mikveh always was an aspect of traditional Judaism I was uncomfortable with. I understand that my perspective isn’t shared by all women, and to those women who disagree with me, I say,Read More


NOVEL JEWS

“Novel Jews” is a downtown reading series in New York that presents provocative and enlightening fiction and literary nonfiction by both today’s literary superstars and the emerging voices of tomorrow. The reading is co-sponsored by The Sol Goldman 14th Street Y, the JCC in Manhattan and the Forward. WHEN: Wednesday, November 10, 7 p.m.Read More


Spiritual Hunger Artists

By Sanford Pinsker

Joy Comes in the Morning By Jonathan Rosen Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 400 pages, $25. ——Jonathan Rosen came to wide public attention, first as the editor (for some 10 years) of this newspaper’s highly regarded Arts & Letters section, and then as the author of “Eve’s Apple” (Random House Inc., l997), an impressive debut novel,Read More


Bridging a Rift Between Israelis and Americans

By Esther Kremer

Outside a velvet rope on a recent fall evening last month, three dark-haired men tossed their cigarettes, passed a security check and queued up to pay a cover charge. They were chatting in Hebrew about a hot new software program as they entered the club, where a celebrity D.J. dubbed “Van Jee” was spinning tunes for a mostly Israeli crowd.As aRead More


A Jewish Doctor Who Put Nazis on the Couch

By Jon Kalish

In 1946, Dr. Leon Goldensohn, a Jewish psychiatrist from Newark, N.J., spent six months conducting lengthy interviews with dozens of Nazis during the Nuremberg trials. Unfortunately, he died before he could write a book about the experience. But now, nearly 60 years after the trials, thanks to his brother, Goldensohn’s copious and detailed notesRead More


Honoring the Present –– and Future –– Nobel Laureates

By Masha Leon

“It’s the first time Israelis have been awarded a Nobel Prize in Science” said Ben Sosewitz, chairman of Technion International’s board of governors, at the October 14 American Technion Society 80th anniversary dinner at The Plaza in New York. While applauding Technion professors Avram Hershko and Aaron Ciechanover — discoverers ofRead More


Rebecca at the Well

By David R. Slavitt

Abraham’s servant Eliezer, at the well outside Nahor, is looking for a wife for Isaac, and he asks the Lord, in Genesis 24:14, for a sign: “Let the maiden to whom I shall say, ‘Pray let down your jar that I may drink,’ and who shall say, ‘Drink, and I will water your camels’ — let her be the one whom you have appointed for yourRead More





Find us on Facebook!
  • Undeterred by the conflict, 24 Jews participated in the first ever Jewish National Fund— JDate singles trip to Israel. Translation: Jews age 30 to 45 travelled to Israel to get it on in the sun, with a side of hummus.
  • "It pains and shocks me to say this, but here goes: My father was right all along. He always told me, as I spouted liberal talking points at the Shabbos table and challenged his hawkish views on Israel and the Palestinians to his unending chagrin, that I would one day change my tune." Have you had a similar experience?
  • "'What’s this, mommy?' she asked, while pulling at the purple sleeve to unwrap this mysterious little gift mom keeps hidden in the inside pocket of her bag. Oh boy, how do I answer?"
  • "I fear that we are witnessing the end of politics in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. I see no possibility for resolution right now. I look into the future and see only a void." What do you think?
  • Not a gazillionaire? Take the "poor door."
  • "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.”
  • from-cache

Would you like to receive updates about new stories?




















We will not share your e-mail address or other personal information.

Already subscribed? Manage your subscription.