For Jewish comics, Dom Imus is no joke.
In the wake of the shock jock’s unflattering comments about the Rutgers University women’s basketball team and his shockingly swift departure from the national airwaves has come a national discussion about the propriety of character defamation in the guise of humor, and predictions that an era of increased civility will ensue.
Grodno, Belarus — Tsilia Brido remembers her early Belarus Passover in her Polotsk hometown, her grandfather leading the seders in Hebrew, women from the neighborhood baking their matzahs in her family’s large wood stove.
“It was before the war,” she says, referring to World War II. Belarus was the first of the former Soviet Union’s republics to be invaded by the German army.
Brido remembers the seders ending after 1941, first under the Nazis, then under the communists.
On a Friday in January 1973, Jesse Perlstein retired from his job as a district manager for the Robert Hall men’s clothing chain.
The following Monday morning he walked to the Samuel Field Y, a few minutes from his home in Little Neck, Queens, and signed up as a volunteer.
The next morning he walked to the Marathon Jewish Community Center, his synagogue a few minutes away, again to volunteer.
Thirty years later, Perlstein is still donating his time.
The recent $20 million settlement between a major American insurance firm and the heirs of Armenian policyholders killed in the Armenian Genocide had its genesis, indirectly, in the memoirs written nearly 90 years ago by a Jewish-American diplomat.
Henry Morgenthau Sr., the German native who served as U.S. ambassador to the Ottoman Empire during World War I, wrote in 1918 in “Ambassador Morgenthau’s Story” about an exchange with Talaat Pasha, Turkey’s Interior Minister and an architect of the Genocide.
Shortly after a little-known cardinal from Poland was elected spiritual head of the Catholic Church in 1978, Rabbi Arthur Schneier received a call from a network television correspondent asking for comment. The correspondent, who “equated Poles with anti-Semitism,” assumed that Rabbi Schneier, a Holocaust survivor and president of the Manhattan-based Appeal of Conscience Foundation, an ecumenical human rights organization, would comment negatively on the new pope, the rabbi recalls.
The next big idea in Jewish life is the past.
The relationship between history, a scientific discipline that is empirical and measurable, and memory, a personal and subjective relationship to one’s life or one’s community, is the subject of Yehuda Kurtzer’s proposal that last week was chosen as the first winner of Brandeis University’s first Charles R. Bronfman Visiting Chair in Jewish Communal Innovation.
Israel Policy Forum to merge with progressive group? October 13th, 2009
For weeks rumors have circulated that the Israel Policy Forum (IPF), a pro-peace process group, was on the verge of shutting down – or merging with another organization.
This week there were reports that the group may merge with the Center for American Progress, a group that defines itself as “a think tank dedicated to improving the lives of Americans through ideas and action.
Rabbi William Berkowitz, a longtime pulpit rabbi and communal leader here, and founder of a popular dialogue series that featured public interviews with hundreds of major politicians and other prominent figures, died in his Manhattan home on Feb. 3 of natural causes. He was 83.
The next big idea in Jewish life will have a foreword, table of contents and bibliography.
It may not have a budget or board of directors.
A competition sponsored by Brandeis University for a new academic chair in Jewish Communal Innovation, which has led to discussions about the founding of a new initiative like birthright israel, has winnowed 231 applicants down to five finalists. But their proposals focus on the ways Jews think, not necessarily on a new program or institution that the Jewish community will develop.
Buenos Aires — At first glance, the once-thriving capital of Argentina looks as thriving as ever. The downtown commercial area, near the banks of the Rio de la Plata river, is filled with people. The shelves of the upscale shops are stocked with the latest goods. The city’s distinctive yellow-and-black taxis cruise the streets.
But at second glance …