Arts & Culture


Good News, Bad News

By Jeffrey Fiskin

An old man with wild white hair, Moses, speaks to the assembled throng on the plains of Moab. Two men in the crowd listen, and comment in the manner of men in crowds. One is Chaim Yonkel, an Israelite who has made the long trek out of exile with Moses; the other is Søren, a philosophic Dane.* * *Moses: Behold I set before you this day, a blessingRead More


PSALM 151

By Rodger Kamenetz

Hapax Legomena

I covered you and cover you I covet you and uncover you My dream intent to discover you seems clear as a snowflake dresses you and undresses you an orange hand on your breast unless it’s you a purple simple hand on your hand is less than you you covered and recovered you Drinking water —

Sampling station — ARead More


Simple and Delightful: They Don’t All Do That

By Raphael Mostel

What is the nature of true love? If there is such a thing, how to understand infidelity? One of the most famously cynical and humane answers is “Cosi Fan Tutte” (“They All Do That”), and it is the last of three operas that Mozart wrote in collaboration with librettist Lorenzo Da Ponte. In this comedy with dark overtones, everyoneRead More


They Love Him, They Love Him Not

By Chemi Shalev

The Path to Geneva By Yossi Beilin RDV Books/Akashic Books, 297 pages, $22.95 —Yossi Beilin commented recently on the ongoing turmoil in Gaza, saying that a strong Palestinian Authority was in Israel’s best interest. It was a relatively benign and quite anticipated remark, but nonetheless one that drew a torrent of insults and abuseRead More


A Terrible, Awful Novel Of Great Importance

By Robert Rosenberg

Siegfried By Harry Mulisch, translated by Paul Vincent Viking Press, 180 pages, $22.95. ——-When galleys for the massive Stalin biography by Montefiore first made the rounds, I got hold of a copy for my father, thinking that the subject would interest him as a survivor of Auschwitz and a former Bundist. He’s read many, if not most,Read More


Shalom, Wall: Jewish Artists Go Graffiti

By Jennifer Siegel

The graffiti art on display at the Sunshine Factory café on Manhattan’s Lower East Side has the bold and gritty feel of New York’s streets. On one canvas, gold lettering floats above a field of green paint speckled with white and purple. In a drawing on the opposite wall, a break-dancer’s tracksuit and gold chains are intricately renderedRead More


Accessing the Inner Female

By Evan Zimroth

At dramatic moments, Moses accesses his inner female.In Numbers, which retells the story of the Israelites’ wanderings in the desert, the rabble gets fired up about the culinary deprivation of having nothing to eat but manna. “O that we had meat to eat!” they cry to Moses in Numbers 11:4-5. “We remember the fish we ate inRead More


Eli Wallach Knows His Lines

By Masha Leon

Bypassing his usually well-researched curriculum vitae of his interview guests, Rabbi William Berkowitz let Eli Wallach explain himself to the July 12 overflow crowd at the Center for Jewish History. “I tell journalists. ‘Please don’t put my age in,’” the 89-year-old Wallach said. “It’s aRead More


Al Harei Catskill: The Vacations of Yore

THE WONDERS OF AMERICAVacations, like women’s fashions, are ever changing. One year, cruises are all the rage; the next, it’s trekking in the Himalayas. Earlier generations were no less impervious to what was in and what was out. As early as the 1920s, increasingly affluent American Jews began to forsake the humble bungalowRead More


Buried Leads: A True Story

By Andree Aelion Brooks

The purveyors of Jewish history have tended to be highly selective in what they choose to focus on. In America, for example, we almost completely ignore the mercantile achievements of the Sephardic Jews through the ages, as well as their role in the development of modern capitalism. And we rarely talk about Jewish involvement in the explosion ofRead More





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