Arts & Culture


Justice, Served: A Tennis Story

By David Davis

The backgrounds of tennis partners Althea Gibson and Angela Buxton were radically different. The daughter of share-croppers, Gibson was born in South Carolina and raised in New York City’s Harlem. British and Jewish, Buxton was the daughter of entertainment impresario Harry Buxton, who made his fortune by breaking the bank at a casino.Read More


You Spin Me Right ’Round A New Book Laces Into the Marketing of Politics

By Ari Melber

All the President’s Spin: George W. Bush, the Media and the Truth By Ben Fritz, Bryan Keefer and Brendan Nyhan Touchstone, 352 pages, $11.20. * * *Many people have accused President Bush of misleading the American public. The editors of Spinsanity.com, a nonpartisan Web site “dedicated to debunking political spin and fact-checking theRead More


PSALM 151

In his epigraph, poet Merrill Leffler raises William Carlos Williams’s bold claim that men die miserably for lack of what is in poetry. It’s a claim that many practical folks would dismiss on the face of it, for if the news of our world is purely a matter of dollars and sense, then how much could poetry matter? Leffler is in a positionRead More


Mystery Sells: What the Kabbalah Centre Actually Teaches

By Jay Michaelson

The Power of Kabbalah By Yehuda Berg (Jodere Group, 2002)


The 72 Names of God By Yehuda Berg (Kabbalah Centre International, 2003) * * *Mainstream Jews cannot stand the Kabbalah Centre. You can tell by the way they mock it, highlight its every flaw (huge offices! expensive bracelets!) and deride Madonna, Britney Spears, AshtonRead More


Two New Beginnings and a Sad Ending

By Masha Leon

“This is my first day on the job,” said Arye Mekel, Israel’s new consul general to New York, at the August 16 preview screening of Margarethe von Trotta’s film, “Rosenstrasse,” at the Center for Jewish History. “The movie is a reflection of [how] human courage can make a significant difference.”“This is [also] my first officialRead More


Avoiding the Curses

By Peretz Rodman

Who will get the sixth aliya at your synagogue this Sabbath? It is usually an uncomplicated business to distribute among those present the honor of pronouncing the blessings over each of the seven-plus-one segments of the public recitation of the week’s Torah portion. The assignments are made to honor guests, recognize members’ celebratoryRead More


The Work of a Worthy Diarist

By Allan Nadler

The Journals of Yaacov Zipper, 1950-1982: The Struggle for Yiddishkayt Translated from the Yiddish and edited by Mervin Butovsky and Ode Garfinkle McGill/Queens University Press, 192 pages, $39.95. * * *The appearance of the random, private journals of the obscure principal of a Canadian Yiddish school does not suggest an auspiciousRead More


Where Have All the Jews Gone?

By Norman Ravvin

When Toronto-based writer Matt Cohen died in 1999, he had just completed a memoir titled, “Typing: A Life in 26 Keys” (Random House, Canada 2000). Alongside its sharply drawn portrait of the Toronto literary and counter-cultural scene of the late 1960s and early 1970s, “Typing” included a provocative challenge to the CanadianRead More


Gleanings

Below is an excerpt from “Survivors: Seven Short Stories,” by Chava Rosenfarb, which will be out this October from Cormorant Books Inc. I was happy to emigrate to Canada, which I considered a land “far from God and from people” — by which I meant former concentration camp inmates — where I would be unlikely ever to be confronted byRead More


A Boatload of Languor And Dreaminess

By Josh Lambert

House on the River: A Summer Journey By Nessa Rapoport Harmony Books, 146 pages, $22. ——–In literature’s most ambitious exploration of the collision between Canada and the Jews, “Solomon Gursky Was Here,” novelist Mordecai Richler conjured Ephraim Gursky, a highly Bronfmanesque patriarch and explorer who so influences InuitRead More





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