Wednesday, October 1, 2014 Tishri 7, 5775
Some very well-known people speak of a lofty subject
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It's been noted by certain reviewers and pundits that God's been having a rough time in the bookstores recently. In what seems a concerted response to the zealousness of the Religious Right -- especially its effectiveness in politics -- a spate of books has appeared proclaiming atheism as a more potent and realistic creed to live by than any expression...
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A publishing house quite unlike any other
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The New York Review of Books , as any lover of literature knows, has been a feature on the publishing scene for more than 40 years now, the brainchild of several New York intellectuals, not a few of whom were Jewish. They included Jason Epstein and his wife, the late Barbara Epstein, both movers and shakers in the publishing world;...
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Right in time for Thanksgiving comes a cornucopia of delights
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Jews and food. Is there any more classic blend of elements? Even people who know nothing about Judaism or Jewish culture know that Jews and eating are intertwined. In fact, one of the things that seems to unite philo-Semites and their anti-Semitic opposites is their envy of the warmth and unity conveyed by the idea of the Jewish table spread...
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But, more important, where?
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When Kenneth I. Helphand's book Defiant Gardens: Making Gardens in Wartime appeared on my desk many months ago, I thumbed through it, stopping for a moment on the chapter devoted to "Ghetto Gardens," and thought a terrible, improper thought: "Holocaust scholars will do anything to find a new angle on a well-trafficked subject." I put the solid, clearly serious volume...
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When it comes to contemporary scholarship dealing with the 24 books that comprise the Hebrew Bible, academics and theologians can find all sorts of ways to disagree with one another. Here are just of few of the subjects they argue about: How reliable are all or parts of the text as a historical document, and what does the entire work...
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