All month I’ve been debating whether or not to jump into the Noah Feldman frenzy.
Feldman, for those of you who have spent the past month under a rock, is the bete noire of Modern Orthodoxy: a yeshiva day school grad who recently published a New York Times Magazine article about how his alma mater has ostracized him for intermarrying.
A country steeped in memory, the cup of coffee and a Danish.
For the last 20 years, lunchtime for Rabbi T. has meant a two-and-a-half block walk from one Lower East Side institution, Mesivta Tifereth Jerusalem, the yeshiva where he teaches Talmud, to Gertel’s, a kosher bakery where he buys a snack and sits at a small table, reviewing a Hebrew text. (Many members of the haredi community are publicity-shy.)
Starting Monday, Rabbi T. will have to get his lunch somewhere else.
The Klezmatics ended months of discord and accusations of gender discrimination last week when five members of the popular and provocative klezmer sextet agreed to settle with the group's former fiddler and founding member Alicia Svigals.
The settlement, which Svigals put "in the high five figures," ended a dispute among one of today's most popular klezmer bands, whose blend of traditional Eastern European music with rock and jazz helped spark the klezmer revival in the late 1980s.
In this corner: a loose affiliation of young Jewish social activists working to transform Judaism "into a more loving, inclusive and radical culture." In this corner: a team of New York-based theater promoters and PR pros marketing merchandise and events to hip Jews and others aspiring to "kosher-style fabulosity" through a Web site called "Jewcy.com."
The stakes in this battle of attitude: legal rights to the name "Jewcy," a title both contenders claim.
Brian Burstin has been praying at Congregation Talmud Torah of Flatbush in Brooklyn since 1967, when he was 11.
Before that, his parents were members at the stately yellow brick Modern Orthodox synagogue on Coney Island Avenue, near the busy Avenue J kosher shopping strip in the Midwood section. The shul's late Rabbi Leo Landman, one of only three spiritual leaders in the synagogue's 80-year-history, performed Burstin's wedding.
Under a bright sun, Guilla Boukhobza walked up to a microphone in front of the Isaiah Wall near the United Nations and cleared her throat.
For the first time, she was going to publicly talk about her family's perilous expulsion from her native Libya.
It was not easy, Boukhobza confided, because even a generation later, a deep fear remains about discussing the heart-rending events that forced her parents and seven siblings to leave Tripoli one step ahead of anti-Jewish mobs.
Things are growing nastier at 3 W. 16th St. in Manhattan. Last week, the Young Israel of Fifth Avenue (YIFA), an Orthodox synagogue with about 200 members located at the Chelsea address, was barred from receiving its packages. That's because the building owner is refusing to accept the synagogue's mail.
The latest incident of anti-Semitism? Hardly.
The building owner is the National Council of Young Israel, the parent organization for nearly 150 Orthodox synagogues across the country.