Wednesday, October 22, 2014 Tishri 28, 5775

Robert Leiter

Former Senior Editor
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The bestowal of the Nobel Prize upon British playwright Harold Pinter several weeks ago was met with praise in the American press. Pinter - of Jewish extraction but nominally Jewish in every other regard - is considered one of the masters of modern drama. Like Samuel Beckett, he's credited with creating a new language that revolutionized the way we look...
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Scholar Donald Weber argues that the majority of Jewish immigrants were hungering to be accepted as Americans while others were haunted by guilt for giving up on the world they left behind in Europe. Weber is speaking metaphorically, of course; I don't remember many of immigrants I knew as a child being anguished over these issues. They were far too...
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Who We Are is an anthology of essays, edited by Derek Rubin and published by Schocken, that I looked forward to with great anticipation but which, in the end, proved to be one of the most frustrating reading experiences I've had recently. The work's premise is simple enough; the subtitle states it succinctly: On Being (and Not Being) a Jewish...
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These days, New York magazine seems to morph into a new publication with every third or fourth issue. The editors, who pride themselves on keeping ahead of the curve in terms of trends would probably love hearing this observation; I, however, don't consider it praise. In fact, I find these periodic transformations baffling. I'd like to tell the people in...
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There's no coffee-table book quite like The Jewish World: 365 Days , published by the incomparable Abrams publishing house, which has given the world some of its most beautiful art books. First, there is the volume's shape, which is shared by all the other "365 Days" titles from the publisher. It measures 91/2x61/2 inches, which makes it wider than it...
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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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