New York

Feminists Object, But ArtScroll Rolls On

10/10/2007 - 20:00
Staff Writer

Walking into a room where the women’s prayer group meets at the Ramaz School, a board member of the Jewish Orthodox Feminist Alliance saw about a dozen copies of “Ohel Sarah: Women’s Siddur,” by the ArtScroll imprint of Mesorah Publications.

New JTS Chancellor To Empower Grassroots

09/05/2007 - 20:00
Staff Writer
At a time when the Conservative movement is struggling to define its goals and message, the new chancellor of the Jewish Theological Seminary, Arnold Eisen, appears set to empower the members themselves to determine its identity. Even “the rabbis are asking me, ‘what does it mean to be a Conservative Jew?’” Eisen told The Jewish Week on the eve of his inauguration this week as the seventh chancellor of JTS, the movement’s anchor institution.

After The Fall

08/16/2007 - 20:00
Staff Writer
When John Ruskay met with a major donor to UJA-Federation of New York Monday in the man’s Midtown office, multiple screens on his desk flashed with stock prices and minute-by-minute financial updates. Their first order of business was to talk about the volatility currently wreaking havoc in the hedge fund, credit and mortgage markets.

Not Your Grandfather’s Beit Midrash

10/19/2009 - 20:00
Staff Writer
Like thousands of men have done for hundreds of years, Rachel Druck is studying the prohibitions of Yom Kippur these days. In Aramaic, in the Talmud, in a yeshiva.

An Author Whose Sources Are Disappearing

10/12/2009 - 20:00
Staff Writer
Pundits have warned for decades that water — or the scarcity thereof — may be the issue that brings the Middle East to the brink of war, more than ideology or territory. Israel, Jordan, and Syria and the Palestinians are united by common, fast-disappearing sources of water, and a desire to control those sources.

A Class Clown Eyes The A-List

09/29/2009 - 20:00
Staff Writer
Stand-up comic Ray Ellin was performing at a New York comedy club a few days after Rosh HaShanah. It was his usual act — some family stories, some bantering with the audience. As usual, he asked people in the crowd where they came from. “Germany,” said one couple. That’s raw meat for a Jewish comic. “I wish you,” Ellin said, “a year of health and happiness — and reparations.” “It killed — killed,” Ellin says. The crowd roared. The Germans? “They laughed too.”

Federation Loses A Pillar In Joseph Gurwin, 89

09/29/2009 - 20:00
Staff Writer
About 80 prominent members of the Palm Beach Jewish community gathered one night early this year, a few months after the extent of their losses in the Bernard Madoff investment scandal became known. The meeting was in the home of one member for a fundraiser on behalf of UJA-Federation of New York. Without prompting, Joseph Gurwin, a part-time member of the community who had lost millions of dollars to Madoff, spoke for a few minutes.

Reform Giant Gottschalk Succumbs

09/14/2009 - 20:00
Staff Writer
Rabbi Alfred Gottschalk, a Holocaust refugee who as a longtime leader of Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion oversaw the growth of the rabbinical school’s four campuses and strengthened the Reform movement’s ties with Israel, died Sept. 12 in his Cincinnati home following a recent automobile accident. He was 79.

Assessing Barack And Bibi

09/14/2009 - 20:00
Staff Writer
Less than a year into new administrations in Washington and Jerusalem, diplomatic relations between the United States and Israel are bleak, but not that bleak, Middle East experts in an academic conference here agreed this week. The participants in “U.S.-Israel Relations: In the Era of Obama and Netanyahu,” held at the Schottenstein Cultural Center in Manhattan, said the continuing pressure on Israel by the Obama administration to halt the expansion of settlements in the Palestinian territories is not likely to improve the relations.

The Politics Of Repentance

09/14/2009 - 20:00
Staff Writer
Two theological underpinnings of the approaching High Holy Days season have become more topical this year: apology and forgiveness. Classical Jewish thought, formulated by scholars like Maimonides centuries ago, consider those twin acts as preludes to the Ten Days of Repentance, direct apologies for the previous year’s slights a prerequisite for Divine forgiveness. In “No Enemy to Conquer: Forgiveness in an Unforgiving World,” British journalist Michael Henderson argues that apologizing and forgiving have a value on both a personal and political plane.
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