Jewish Journal

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  • Calendar: September 30-October 6

    By Amanda Epstein

    11 hours ago

    FRI | SEPT 30


    This award-winning documentary completes a trilogy of films that explores and uncovers the connections between our food and the natural world. “Seed” follows passionate seed keepers who protect our 12,000-year-old...

  • Basic baking, Bittman style

    By Jessica Ritz

    12 hours ago

    The former New York Times food columnist Mark Bittman has done it again. Full of practical tools and solid fundamentals, as well as aspirational challenges for more confident bakers, The everyday utility of his new book, “How to Bake Everything” is a reminder of why battle-scarred...

  • Shimon Peres: Godfather of Israeli entrepreneurship

    12 hours ago

    The passing of former Israeli President Shimon Peres at the age of 93 is rightly provoking much reflection on his life and times. While most people know the political history of Peres, and his globe-trotting efforts on behalf of Middle East peace (he won the Nobel Prize for the...

  • Should Hillary listen to Shakespeare or Biden?

    12 hours ago

    If you listen to the pundits, Hillary Clinton has miles to go before her supporters can sleep, despite her almost universally proclaimed victory in the first debate. “Coming out, it was clear that she did win decisively but I suspect that the campaign will remain ferociously...

  • L.A. Community Eruv raises enough funds to stay up

    By Ryan Torok

    12 hours ago

    The Los Angeles Community Eruv will be up this Shabbat, and it’s not expected to be down anytime soon, even after an emergency request for funds earlier this month indicated that it could be in jeopardy, according to Howard Witkin, who oversees operations for the eruv.


  • Women rabbis: Progress made, but challenges remain

    By Esther D. Kustanowitz

    13 hours ago

    Jewish women study to be spiritual leaders for the same reasons that their male colleagues do: to bring Torah learning and Jewish meaning to their communities. But the challenges many women rabbis have faced are different from those of their male colleagues. Their stories —...

  • Moving and Shaking: Gideon Raff honored, Brent Shapiro Foundation fundraiser and more

    By Ryan Torok

    13 hours ago

    The Steve Tisch School of Film and Television at Tel Aviv University (TAU) gave its first Influencer Award at a ceremony held Sept. 14 at Sony Pictures Studios to Gideon Raff, a TAU alum, writer, producer and director who brought the show “Homeland” from Israel to the United...

  • Carnegie Deli to close at end of 2016

    13 hours ago

    The Carnegie Deli, a New York City mecca for Jewish foods since 1937, will close at the end of the year.

    Owner Marian Harper Levine broke the news to employees on Friday morning, The New York Post reported. She will leave the restaurant open until Dec. 31 so that staffers can...

  • Adelson likes to play by his rules

    By Bill Boyarsky

    13 hours ago

    Sheldon Adelson, the multibillionaire Las Vegas contributor to Jewish causes and Republican campaigns — including that of Donald Trump — likes to get his way. Now he’s up against a bunch of billionaires and millionaires who operate in the same imperious manner: the owners of the...

  • Dismantling the machinery of death

    13 hours ago

    In California, with almost 750 men and women on death row, the one thing on which opponents and supporters agree is that the death penalty system is dysfunctional and has failed miserably by every measure. 

    Since the Briggs Initiative reinstated the death penalty in 1978, we've...

  • Do the Things You Believe You Cannot Do: NOW

    By Lisa Ellen Niver

    14 hours ago

    During a Girlfriend Getaway in Grapevine Texas, I met Tammilee Tilson and learned about her project to do 40 new things before she was 40. I was so enthusiastic about her project that the other writers on the trip suggested I do it as well. I said, “I simply cannot.” They could not...

  • Ledor Vador:  On Rosh Hashanah, reach out to Sinai.

    By Dr. Afshine Emrani

    15 hours ago

    I close my eyes.

    Our arms are locked into position, shoulder to shoulder, side by side.  Friend and stranger pull each other in.  We’re all under one tent.  We’re all one.

    “Ledor Vador” we sing.  We sway. 

    “From generation to generation Your miracles give us reason to live.”

  • Hebrew Word of the Week: Yom Tov

    By Yona Sabar

    16 hours ago

    Literally “a good day,” a rabbinical* idiom for the biblical words hag “round dance, festive procession” (Deuteronomy 16:14), mo’ed “festive assembly/time” (Numbers 10:10), regel “foot, pilgrimage” and plural regalim (Exodus 23:14). The plural is Yamim Tovim, but in Yiddish...

  • Poem: Praying

    17 hours ago

    In the middle of stickball me and Eddy Zeit
    noticed it in his driveway. “It’s illegal
    to kill them while they’re praying,” Eddy said
    as he dangled the stick above its head. A little
    water dripped down from the garden hose
    that hung in loops beside the driveway, making
    a dark,...

  • Saying goodbye to Shimon Peres, world leaders talk peace and love

    18 hours ago

    Israeli and world leaders gathered atop Mount Herzl on Friday to say goodbye to Shimon Peres, Israel’s last founding father.

    In addition to fond personal recollections, many of those who took the stage alongside Peres’ Israeli-flag-draped coffin offered their visions of the peace...

  • Philippines’ Duterte likens himself to Hitler, wants to kill millions of drug users

    18 hours ago

    Philippines President Rodrigo Duterte appeared to liken himself to Nazi leader Adolf Hitler on Friday and said he would "be happy" to exterminate three million drug users and peddlers in the country.

    His comments triggered shock and anger among Jewish groups in the United States,...

  • On a Jerusalem hillside, rivals set aside differences to honor Peres

    18 hours ago

    Under a white canopy on a forested hillside in the late summer sunshine, old friends and several adversaries brushed shoulders with one another on Friday as they mourned the death of Israeli statesman and Nobel laureate Shimon Peres.

    Dozens of world leaders and hundreds of...

  • Take This - It’s Yours: A poem for Parsha Nitzavim

    By Rick Lupert

    19 hours ago

    This is for you.
    You standing at the mountain
    and you who only read about the mountain
    in a book.

    This is for you, all of you.
    Your leaders, your elders, your elected officials,
    your men and women, your whatever you
    decide you are.

    This is for you.
    Your children, and...

  • Rosner’s Torah-Talk: Parashat Nitzavim with Rabbi Rick Shapiro

    By Shmuel Rosner

    1 day ago

    Our guest this week is Rabbi Rick Shapiro, Interim Rabbi of the Ahavath Chesed congregation in Jacksonville, FL. Rabbi Shapiro completed his B.A. in Jewish Studies at UCLA  and received his M.A.,  rabbinic ordination, and Doctor Of Divinity (Honorus Causa) from Hebrew Union College...

  • The challenge of our time

    1 day ago

    In the wake of last summer’s horrific massacre at Pulse, a gay nightclub in Orlando, I wrote to the Shalhevet community about our responsibility to take active steps to create safer spaces for the LGBT community. Well, the moment has arrived. We can no longer sit on the sidelines....

  • The Pledge

    1 day ago

    I am a gay Orthodox Jewish teen. That in and of itself may be one of the most controversial sentences in modern Jewish history, but it’s also simply my life. I daven, or pray in com-munity, and I am part of the honors Judaic program at my school. I keep kosher, observe Shabbat,...

  • Modern Orthodox Jewish life blossoms in Berlin

    By  Orit Arfa

    2 days ago

    A few years ago, Yael Merlini wasn’t sure she and her family could stay in Germany. Her children, ages 7, 11 and 15, were the only Jews in their school in Giessen, a town near Frankfurt. The Jewish population numbered fewer than 400, mostly elderly Russian Jews. She also...

  • The Nazi PR machine

    By Jonathan Kirsch

    2 days ago

    One of the great mysteries of history is how a country as civilized as Germany was persuaded to embrace a man as coarse and cruel as Adolf Hitler. The answer, according to Nicholas O’Shaughnessy, is marketing.

    “The Nazi regime should be viewed and understood as the most...

  • Rabbis debate how to address the election

    By Ryan Torok

    2 days ago

    It’s hard to deny that this year’s High Holy Days take place in the midst of a presidential election campaign that is more heated and divisive than any in recent history. In the last election, there were two very credible candidates both speaking a similar language. They [may] have...

  • Orthodox group makes prenup mandatory for Jewish marriages

    By Ryan Torok

    2 days ago

    The Rabbinical Council of America (RCA) has adopted a resolution requiring a hala-chic prenuptial agreement in any wedding officiated by a member of the organiza-tion, thereby preventing husbands from deny-ing a get, or Jewish divorce document, to their spouse in the future, or a...

  • Focusing on unity, Hillary Clinton wishes U.S. Jews ‘Shanah Tovah’

    By Jacob Kornbluh, Jewish Insider

    2 days ago

    Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton on Thursday reaffirmed her commitment to stand up for Israel’s security and protect her from unfair efforts to delegitimize it.

    “I will always – as I always have – stand up for Israel’s security, continue to work toward peace, and...

  • The other crisis on campus

    2 days ago

    Our Jewish community is rightly concerned about Israel on campus. Serious challenges face pro-Israel students around the country today, and much ink has been spilled about the topic. 

    But the purpose of this piece is not to recap the stories you’re already reading. Rather, I want...

  • Wanted: United student voice on campuses

    2 days ago

    What a new school year this is turning out to be.

    Milan Chatterjee, the former Graduate Student Association president at UCLA, will be finishing his last year of law school at New York University, driven from his West Coast campus by what he calls a “hostile and unsafe campus...

  • Cultural historian is a modest ‘genius’

    By Tom Teicholz

    2 days ago

    When the 2016 MacArthur Fellowships, commonly called “genius grants,”  were announced Sept. 21, among the 23 honorees was Josh Kun, associate professor at the Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism at USC. Kun, 45, is a cultural historian whose work examines what popular...

  • Simanim: Signs of a new year

    By Esther D. Kustanowitz

    2 days ago

    No question that Rosh Hashanah is known as one of the most important holidays in the Jewish calendar, but it is not known for its comedy. If you look carefully among all the serious themes of starting over, forgiveness and repentance, however, you may find one New Year tradition...

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