The Arts

Killers Of Jews Or Saviors of Jews?

New study by YU history professor sheds fresh light on Poland’s wartime anti-Nazi Resistance movement.

11/02/2015 - 19:00
Staff Writer

A third-generation American Jew who grew up in California, Joshua Zimmerman was raised with an atypical perspective about Poland. Most Jews in this country whose parents or grandparents immigrated from Poland as survivors or refugees of the Holocaust heard mostly horror stories about anti-Semitic Poles.

YU professor Joshua Zimmerman’s book on Poland’s underground fighters during World War II. Steve Lipman/JW

New Context Shapes Miller’s Shoah Play

Director hoping to banish earlier view of ‘Incident at Vichy.’

11/02/2015 - 19:00
Special To The Jewish Week

Deeply flawed human beings making profound moral choices populate almost all of Arthur Miller’s plays. But the Jewish dramatist rarely dealt as explicitly with the world’s collective responsibility for the Jews of Europe as in his 1964 one-act play, “Incident at Vichy”; it centers on a group of nine men and a boy who have been rounded up by German military and French police in Vichy France, and who wait to be “inspected” to see if they are Jewish under the laws of the Nazi “puppet” regime.

Darren Pettie as LeDuc and Richard Thomas as Von Berg in Signature Theatre’s production of “Incident at Vichy.” Joan Marcus

NY Artist Archie Rand Takes On Torah’s 613 Commandments

11/02/2015 - 19:00

A new book by a trailblazing artist raises an old question: Is there such a thing as truly Jewish art? And its corollary: If so, would anyone buy it?

Archie Rand, an artist who has a book coming out with a painting for each of the 613 Jewish commandments. JTA

‘Crazy Ex-Girlfriend’: The CW’s Newest Jewish Comedy

Reminiscent of 'Seinfeld' and 'Broad City,' this musical dramedy doesn't shy away from its protagonist's MOT status.

10/28/2015 - 20:00
Editorial Intern

Vice calls CW's new show “The best TV show you’re not watching" because it "combines the ribald humor and ... of Broad City with Seinfeld's obsession with social minutiae while jacking up the pacing to 30 Rock–levels of freneticism.”

Rachel Bloom as Rebecca Bunch, a successful New York lawyer who moves to California to try to reunite with her ex-boyfriend. CW

Punch And Counterpunch

At this year’s Other Israel Film Festival, Zionism and coexistence collide in the spotlight.

10/26/2015 - 20:00
Special To The Jewish Week

This has been an autumn in which all the news from the Middle East suggests that the entire population of the region has gone quite mad. Whether it has been Jews burning babies, 12-year-old Palestinians stabbing Israeli kids of the same age, or the prime minister shifting the blame for the Shoah away from Hitler, the past several months have been a nightmare for anyone who cares about Israelis or Palestinians.

“Censored Voices,” based on Amos Oz’s interviews with soldiers after the Six-Day War. Courtesy Music Box Films

‘Train’ Follows Its Own Track

Teens take center stage in this riveting Holocaust novel by Danny M. Cohen.

10/25/2015 - 20:00

Courtesy of Danny M. Cohen

The Age Of Aging Wisely

10/20/2015 - 20:00

In a season in which 73-year-old Erica Jong has published “Fear of Dying,” 89-year-old Dick Van Dyke is launching “Keep Moving: And Other Tips and Truths About Aging,” and 76-year-old Lily Tomlin is starring in the film “Grandma,” the topic of aging is newly visible.

Rabbi Rachel Cowan is co-author of a book that tells how to age gracefully and thoughtfully.

A Tragic Hero, In Any Language

Is a Yiddish ‘Death of a Salesman’ more revelatory than one translated into any other tongue?

10/19/2015 - 20:00
Special To The Jewish Week

When Arthur Miller’s “Death of a Salesman” debuted on Broadway in 1949, the idea that a common person could be the subject of tragedy was revolutionary. Willy Loman was about as humble a hero as one could imagine, a man whose whole life was a failure and a disappointment. That he could be Jewish, like his creator, occurred to few; this was a period, after all, in which American Jews were assiduously trying to shed most of the vestiges of their tradition, and to merge as fully as possible into the life of their adopted country.

Avi Hoffman as Willy Loman. At right, with sons Biff (Daniel Kahn) and Happy (Lev Hershkovitz). Ronald L. Glassman

Matisyahu: Leaving Orthodoxy ‘One Of The Hardest Things’

10/14/2015 - 20:00

With his clean-shaven face and hip clothing, it’s easy to forget that Matisyahu was a Hasidic icon before he was just a Jewish one.

Matisyahu performing in Moscow, Dec. 7, 2014. JTA

What Remains: Remembering Chantal Akerman

10/13/2015 - 20:00
Special To The Jewish Week

In one of his finest poems, “Of Poor B.B.,” Bertolt Brecht suggests that eventually all that will remain of our cities and our presence in them is the wind that blows through them. It is hard, watching the opening shot of Chantal Akerman’s last film, “No Home Movie,” not to think of that prediction. The film opens with a very long take of a small tree standing up against a loud and stiff wind in a desolate desertscape.

Chantal Akerman: Her family’s Holocaust background colored her films. Getty Images
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