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Archive for February, 2015

Rabbi Zvi Tau and the Future of Religious Zionism

It is common for people to speak about Religious Zionism as if it is a monolithic ideological group that shares common assumptions about the State of Israel, secular studies, the army, etc. Religious Zionism is actually made up of numerous smaller groups, some more dominant than others, which all together make up what insiders call […]

Did Rabbi Meir of Rothenberg Refuse Release from Prison

One of the most important figures in Jewish history during the Middle Ages is Rabbi Meir of Rothenberg (Maharam), author of hundreds of responsa and communal leader. A tragic episode of his life is his imprisonment (1286) after a failed attempt to flee Germany, his eventual death in prison (1293), and that it was forbidden […]

Hoshana Like You’ve Never Seen it Before

A very nice modern interpretation of a traditional Jewish liturgical prayer.

New and Important Article on Alenu

Jeff Hoffman has written an important article on the Alenu prayer, The Image of the Other in Jewish Interpretations of Alenu. Hoffman not only addresses interpretations of the Other, but also gives an informative overview of the liturgical history of the Alenu prayer. The text of Alenu can first be documented in the 10th century […]

The Jews Own Manhattan

An eruv is one of the markers of a vibrant observant Jewish community, thus it is no surprise that there is an eruv around most of Manhattan. The Manhattan Eruv has an interesting history, and Adam Mintz has written a good overview of that history. The Manhattan Eruv has already been written up in the […]

A Censored Volume of the Beit Yosef

Musings of a Jewish Bookseller has a nice post with images about a censored volume of the Beit Yosef, Even Ha-Ezer, that was printed in Venice in 1565. Apparently this censor was quite prudish about sexual matters.

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