Monday, October 20, 2014 Tishri 26, 5775

Robert Leiter

Former Senior Editor
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There's something truly exciting about running across the very first issue of a new magazine, one you haven't heard a word about in advance, especially in these precarious times for all ventures that deal with the printed word. That happened recently to me during a visit to Barnes & Noble, where I stumbled upon 12th Street . This new journal,...
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Maimonides, a towering figure in Jewish history, did many things, all of them well
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Is there anything left to be said about Maimonides? He must be one of the most-frequently discussed figures in all of Jewish history, a thinker and an interpretive genius -- to say nothing of his accomplishments as a physician, astronomer and translator -- whose many works in a number of disciplines have been analyzed and decoded in each generation since...
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These survivors' tales offer guidance for life
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People have been talking for years now about the importance of learning the lessons of the Holocaust, but I've always been confused about exactly what they mean. Of course, I do know in one, very elemental sense what they're driving at. They mean that we have to learn how not to hate others, learn to free ourselves of prejudice, and...
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Now that I'm fast approaching my 60th birthday, I find myself riveted by any descriptions I run across of the aging process. Not that I consider myself old. But those who are honest with themselves as they approach their seventh decade have to admit that their bodies have begun sending signals that are a good deal different from the ones...
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We've all heard the admonition: If you get a tattoo -- if you desecrate your body in this way -- you will not be able to be buried in a Jewish cemetery. Such phrases filled Jewish childhoods in mid-20th century America; and yet, who would have imagined way back then that this standard parental admonition would provide the lead for...
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Profile

Robert Leiter served as senior editor of the Jewish Exponent before retiring in Dec. 2013. 

In his 30 years with the paper, he won many awards and held many positions, from full-time reporter to interim editor. For five years in the early 1980s, he was managing editor of Inside magazine, the Exponent's sister publication, and for seven years in the 2000s, he was the quarterly's editor in chief, while still working full time for the paper.

Since the mid-1980s, he reported from most of the major capitals of Europe for the Exponent, with an emphasis on the Eastern Bloc countries, during and after Communist rule. Throughout this period, he visited Poland, the two Germanies and the Soviet Union with greatest frequency, but also made visits to Austria, Hungary, Czechoslovakia, Bulgaria, Romania, the former Yugoslavia, Ukraine, Latvia, Lithuania and Estonia. He has also reported from Catalonia, Alsace, Zurich and Venice, as well as from Costa Rica, Norway, India and the Middle East. A number of his journalism awards have been for his reporting from Europe.

He is a contributing editor to The American Poetry Review, which is based in Philadelphia, and in the 1980s, he served as Murray Friedman's assistant to the U.S. Civil Rights Commission in Washington, D.C.

He has also been a freelance writer for 40 years and his book reviews, short stories, essays, interviews and profiles have appeared in The Nation, The New Republic, CommonwealDissent, The American Scholar, The Hudson Review, The New Leader, The Forward, Moment, Redbook, The Pennsylvania GazetteThe Philadelphia BulletinThe Philadelphia Inquirer, Philadelphia magazine, The New York Times, The New York Times Book Review, Partisan Review and many other mainstream local and national publications.

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