Monday, September 1, 2014 Elul 6, 5774
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Several months ago, The New York Times Style Magazine , which in this case was devoted solely to travel, ran a lively article about the town of Boulder, Colo. The title was "Twenty-Five Square Miles Surrounded by Reality," which, for those conversant with "Boulder-ese," sums things up nicely; even more to the point was the second headline: "If you're a...
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Judah Halevi, who lived, it is thought, from 1075 to 1141, remains to this day one of the most remarkable figures in the history of Jewish literature and thought. Principally remembered as a poet, he was also a serious thinker, both within his poetry and outside of it, especially if one considers all he had to say about faith, the...
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A young victim of the Nazis is returned to the world by an intrepid historian
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Götz Aly is one of the most enterprising of Holocaust historians, having produced one of the discipline's most important recent books, Hitler's Beneficiaries: Plunder, Racial War and the Nazi Welfare State , which was published in the United States last year by Metropolitan Books. Aly's thesis is hinted at in the subtitle, but is far more wide-ranging than the phrase...
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A painter comfortable with the uncomfortable
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When the artist R.B. Kitaj died at age 74 in October of last year, The New York Times ran a respectful, studied sort of obituary, under the headline "Painter of Moody Human Dramas." Kitaj (pronounced kit-EYE), who was Jewish and American-born but who spent the bulk of his career living and working in England, was always a controversial figure, beloved...
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A gimmick to engage or a real disclosure?
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Philippe Grimbert's Memory , which comes billed as a novel, yet one undeniably based in fact, also comes laden with a number of plaudits and prizes, all of them listed prominently on the cover. We are told that the book was a bestseller in France, the winner of the prestigious Prix Goncourt, winner of Elle magazine's readers' prize and winner...
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