Jewish Literature

The Dangers of Favoring One Child Over Another December 28, 2012 12:54 pm

The Dangers of Favoring One Child Over Another

I’ve always seen the biblical Jacob as characterized by two central yet seemingly contradictory...

The Greatness of Growth and Change December 19, 2012 8:29 pm

The Greatness of Growth and Change

The sequence from Bereishit (Genesis) 37 to 50 is the longest unbroken narrative in the Torah...

Disguise and the Mending of Identity December 14, 2012 5:13 pm

Disguise and the Mending of Identity

Joseph is now the ruler of Egypt. The famine he predicted has come to pass. It extends beyond...

The Jewish Refusal to be Comforted December 6, 2012 8:05 pm

The Jewish Refusal to be Comforted

The deception has taken place. Joseph has been sold into slavery. His brothers have dipped...

A People Capable of Feeling Distress, Even in Victory November 28, 2012 9:56 pm

A People Capable of Feeling Distress, Even in Victory

Jacob and Esau are about to meet again after a separation of twenty two years. It is a fraught...

On Relationships: W.H. Auden vs. Amos the Prophet November 8, 2012 3:13 pm

On Relationships: W.H. Auden vs. Amos the Prophet

“We will buy the poor for silver and the needy for a pair of shoes.” (Amos 8:6) W.H....

Reinterpreting Bible Scenes Illuminates New Meanings November 1, 2012 8:26 pm

Reinterpreting Bible Scenes Illuminates New Meanings

It is one of the most famous scenes in the Bible. Abraham is sitting at the entrance to...

Parenting in Judaism: Learning from Abraham October 23, 2012 9:23 pm

Parenting in Judaism: Learning from Abraham

The call to Abraham, with which (the Bible portion of) Lech Lecha begins, seems to come from...

Unchosen: Memoirs of a Philosemite October 17, 2012 11:33 am

Unchosen: Memoirs of a Philosemite

I co-wrote a book with Julie Burchill a few years ago. It’s called Not In My Name: A Compendium...

Genesis: Ideological Calendars and the Land of Israel October 12, 2012 12:56 pm

Genesis: Ideological Calendars and the Land of Israel

Everyone is conditioned culturally to think in specific ways and to adopt specific timelines. Christians...

The Shadow of a Great Rock: A Literary Appreciation of the King James Bible (REVIEW) September 19, 2012 10:34 am

The Shadow of a Great Rock: A Literary Appreciation of the King James Bible (REVIEW)

The Shadow of a Great Rock: A Literary Appreciation of the King James Bible, by Harold Bloom  ...

Jewish Fiction Finds a New Home on the Internet September 19, 2012 2:10 am

Jewish Fiction Finds a New Home on the Internet

Speaking over lively klezmer music in a Krakow café, Canadian author and freelance journalist...

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  • Book Reviews Personalities How a Jewish Leader With 3 Months to Live Created a ‘Seminar’ on Life

    How a Jewish Leader With 3 Months to Live Created a ‘Seminar’ on Life

    JNS.org – What would you do if you found out that you had only three more months to live? Gordon Zacks was a successful businessman, a leader of Jewish life, and a confidante and adviser to President George H.W. Bush. He knew that he had prostate cancer, but doctors advised him that it was very slow-growing and nothing to worry about. Then came the day when the doctors told him his cancer metastasized to his liver, and that he had [...]

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  • Blogs Theater 10 Things I Learned From My Play About Holocaust Denial

    10 Things I Learned From My Play About Holocaust Denial

    Last month, my one-man show Hoaxocaust! Written and performed by Barry Levey with the generous assistance of the Institute for Political and International Studies, Tehran ran in the New York International Fringe Festival, where it won an Overall Excellence Award. The play has now been selected to run in the Fringe Encores Series at Baruch College’s Performing Arts Center, for four performances which started on Thursday, September 11. Getting the play to the stage was not easy, however. Here are [...]

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  • Arts and Culture Israel Israeli Music Producer Racks Up Over 535,000 YouTube Hits – in Two Days

    Israeli Music Producer Racks Up Over 535,000 YouTube Hits – in Two Days

    Phenomenon: Tel Aviv-based musician and “sampler” extraordinaire, Kutiman (aka Ophir Kutiel) has hit another one out of the park with “Give It Up,” a fully-functioning song in its own right, assembled from hundreds of ameteur and instructional music videos. The Jerusalem-born musical prodigy is best know for his diverse online musical projects. In the latest video, uploaded to YouTube on Sept. 12th, Kutiel thanked most of the musicians and individuals he chose to include in the meticulously-edited clip, which opens with [...]

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  • Theater US & Canada Behind-the-Scenes Reel of Ridley Scott’s Moses Epic Shows Scenes Using 4000 Extras (VIDEO)

    Behind-the-Scenes Reel of Ridley Scott’s Moses Epic Shows Scenes Using 4000 Extras (VIDEO)

    A recently released behind-the-scenes reel of Ridley Scott’s upcoming film Exodus: Gods and Kings shows just how far the director has gone to portray one of the Bible’s most famous narratives. In the clip, which shows scenes involving up to 4,000 extras, the visionary director discusses what drew him to the biblical tale of Moses. “The Moses story was a massive challenge, which I really love. I wanted to explore the complexity of his character and I was stunned by [...]

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  • Arts and Culture Jewish Identity Turner Classic Movies Showcases ‘Broad Sweep’ of the Jewish Experience on Film

    Turner Classic Movies Showcases ‘Broad Sweep’ of the Jewish Experience on Film

    JNS.org – Since 2006, the Turner Classic Movies (TCM) cable and satellite TV network has hosted “The Projected Image,” a month-long showcase examining how different cultural and ethnic groups have been portrayed on the big screen. At last, after previously covering African Americans, Asians, the LGBT community, Latinos, Native Americans, Arabs, and people with disabilities, the annual series is delving into Jewish film this month. “The Projected Image: The Jewish Experience on Film,” whose first segment aired Sept. 2, runs [...]

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  • Book Reviews Jewish Identity An Inside Look at the Hasidim (REVIEW)

    An Inside Look at the Hasidim (REVIEW)

    The sight of young girls in pinafores and young boys wearing peyos – sidelocks – dangling over their ears is a sure sign that you have entered the enigmatic precincts of the Hasidim – the pious ones. Veteran New York Times journalist Joseph Berger’s new book, THE PIOUS ONES: The World of Hasidim and their Battles with America, takes the reader on a journey into the enclaves where various sects of Jews live a seemingly outmoded way of life in [...]

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  • Arts and Culture Jewish Identity How Jewish Television Pioneer Milton Berle Inspired Modern Comedy Stars

    How Jewish Television Pioneer Milton Berle Inspired Modern Comedy Stars

    JNS.org – Today’s comedy superstars, especially those whose careers are driven by television, may very well owe their success to pioneering Jewish entertainer Milton Berle. Born Mendel Berlinger in Manhattan in 1908, Berle became America’s first small-screen star. Aptly nicknamed “Mr. Television,” he influenced and helped promote the work of hundreds of younger comics. “Milton Berle was deceptively successful and very Jewish,” says Lawrence Epstein, author of The Haunted Smile: The Story of Jewish Comedians in America, published the year [...]

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  • Jewish Identity Sports Jewish ‘Hoops Whisperer’ a Secret Weapon for NBA Stars

    Jewish ‘Hoops Whisperer’ a Secret Weapon for NBA Stars

    JNS.org – Idan Ravin’s friends chipped in to buy him a humble but life-changing bar mitzvah gift—a basketball hoop his father attached to the roof of his garage. Little did his friends know that years later, he would be the personal trainer of National Basketball Association (NBA) stars Carmelo Anthony, Kevin Durant, Dwight Howard, and Stephen Curry. Ravin’s new book, “The Hoops Whisperer: On the Court and Inside the Head of Basketball’s Best Players,” details his rise from a Jewish upbringing [...]

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