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Who is Serenaded on Friday Night: the Woman of the House, or the Divine Presence?

Who is Serenaded on Friday Night: the Woman of the House, or the Divine Presence?

Before the meal on Sabbath eve, the prayer book offers a song of praise to the ideal woman.

Nov. 30 2017 12:01AM
The Ardent, Stiff-Necked Spirit of Golda Meir

The Ardent, Stiff-Necked Spirit of Golda Meir

A new biography brings to life a leader of few words who accomplished much with the ones she had, and reminds us how much of her Zionist perseverance remains intact today.

Nov. 29 2017 12:01AM
Why Does “Making” Mean What It Means for American Ashkenazi Jews?

Why Does “Making” Mean What It Means for American Ashkenazi Jews?

If you don’t know what it means, you can probably figure it out. (Or you can read this column.)

Nov. 22 2017 12:01AM
The Orthodox Rabbi Who Set Out to Turn Postmodernism to Jewish Gain

The Orthodox Rabbi Who Set Out to Turn Postmodernism to Jewish Gain

Many view postmodern skepticism as profoundly threatening to religious belief. Rav Shagar saw it as liberating and enriching. Was he right?

Nov. 15 2017 12:01AM
Remembering the Great Czech Jewish Harpsichordist Zuzana Růžičková

Remembering the Great Czech Jewish Harpsichordist Zuzana Růžičková

Růžičková, who died in September, survived both Hitler and Stalin to become a brilliant interpreter of J.S. Bach—and the only person to commit his entire keyboard oeuvre to disc.

Nov. 9 2017 12:01AM
No, the Book of Joshua Does Not Tell of a Rare Solar Eclipse

No, the Book of Joshua Does Not Tell of a Rare Solar Eclipse

Despite the claim of two recent scientific papers.

Nov. 8 2017 12:01AM
Wink: A Story

Wink: A Story

In the mid-1970s, an Israeli military governor in Ramallah watches the trial of four young Arab men who have accused their interrogators of torture.

Nov. 2 2017 12:01AM
From King David to Larry David: A New Look at Jewish Humor

From King David to Larry David: A New Look at Jewish Humor

For better, and for worse, Jeremy Dauber’s Jewish Comedy: A Serious History tells the story of Jewish comedy as the story of Jewish civilization.

Nov. 1 2017 12:01AM
The Chapter of the Bible in Which Four Nations Are Born

The Chapter of the Bible in Which Four Nations Are Born

Lekh l’kha narrates the birth of the Arabs, the Ammonites, the Moabites, and, of course, the Jewish people.

Oct. 26 2017 12:01AM
The Famous Israeli Accent, and How It Came About

The Famous Israeli Accent, and How It Came About

“I em verry heppy to mit you end yourr femily in yourr hawm.”

Oct. 25 2017 12:01AM
A Romanian Jew's Private Judgment of a World Bent on Condemning Him

A Romanian Jew's Private Judgment of a World Bent on Condemning Him

In brilliantly charting the psychological effects of anti-Semitism on both its perpetrators and its victims, a newly translated 1934 novel outdoes even such master analysts as Freud and Proust.

Oct. 18 2017 12:01AM
What's a Kvitl, and Why Wish Anyone a Good One?

What's a Kvitl, and Why Wish Anyone a Good One?

“A gut kvitl!” East European Jews once said to each other in the days just before and during the holiday of Sukkot, and many still do. What does it mean?

Oct. 10 2017 12:01AM
Moses' Farewell Song in the Desert

Moses' Farewell Song in the Desert

What does it mean to be God’s chosen people? As Moses counsels the Israelites before he dies, their failure will have consequences—and failure is unavoidable.

Oct. 4 2017 12:01AM
The 80th Anniversary of the Two-State Solution

The 80th Anniversary of the Two-State Solution

In 1937, an official British report first proposed the partition of Mandate Palestine. The story behind it helps to explain why the Arab-Jewish conflict remains unresolved.

Oct. 2 2017 12:01AM