November 25, 2021

The BEST: Alice’s Resturant

This post is about Arlo Guthrie’s “Alice's Restaurant,” and it's about Arlo, and the Restaurant, but "Alice's Restaurant" is not about a restaurant. Instead, Rina Chaya Shamilov connects the Thanksgiving folk music classic to the Pesach story, charts a journey through its music, and questions finding a method for confronting injustice without anger. This Thanksgiving in “The BEST.”
November 23, 2021

Go, Go, Go Joseph

How Colorful Was Joseph’s Coat? Though many assume Jacob's gift to Joseph was “a coat of many colors,” a study of classical commentators and midrashic traditions reveals a spectrum of alternative interpretations. Analyzing these offers deeper insight into why it upset Joseph’s brothers to such a degree that they would plot to kill him! Sarah Rudolph explores...
November 22, 2021

REVIEW ESSAY: Rabbi in Buchenwald; Kabbalist in Montreal

Rabbinic biographies are often thinly disguised hagiographies designed to “inspire.” In reviewing two recent books that buck this trend, Zev Eleff shows how the biographies of R. Yudel Rosenberg and R. Herschel Schacter ask profound—and in their own way “inspiring”—questions about leading a Modern Orthodox life and leadership in Modern Orthodoxy.
November 18, 2021

The BEST: Adam Gopnik’s Essays

The New Yorker’s Adam Gopnik is an erudite polymath, and his elegant essays are a source of astute acumen, offering valuable insight and a model of superb writing. Yitzchak Blau’s offers a reader’s guide in this week’s “The BEST.”
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