"The Modern Jewish Girl's Guide to Guilt" edited by Ruth Andrew Ellenson (Dutton, $24.95).
When Ruth Andrew Ellenson achieved the writer's milestone of selling her first book, her father responded in classic Jewish parental fashion.
"He was thrilled and said, 'Honey, that's wonderful.' Then there was a long pause," Ellenson recalled. "And he said, 'I guess this means I have to wait longer for grandchildren.'"
As the editor of the newly released "The Modern Jewish Girl's Guide to Guilt," Ellenson now has both the professional and personal credentials to speak on behalf of any Jewish woman who struggles with the notion of "letting my people down. I've always been interested in what's complicated about being Jewish and how you balance the different parts of life," said the 31-year-old freelance journalist. "Jewish women have been given opportunities they never had before. We live in a time of choice and so there are myriad new ways to feel guilty."
Dov Charney, founder, CEO and president of American Apparel, has been hailed by many anti-sweatshop activists as a pioneer in the fair treatment of garment workers in Los Angeles, in an industry notorious for substandard working conditions and abuse. But now, a competing, unflattering reputation is beginning to overtake his good press, as allegations of sexual harassment come to light.
"Shalom Y'all: Images of Jewish Life in the American South" photography by Bill Aron, text by Vicki Reikes Fox (Algonquin Books, $24.95).
While the idea of Southern Jews may be as improbable for some as snacking on matzah while drinking a mint julep, in fact, the American South has had a thriving Jewish community since the early 1700s.
The $114 million opening weekend for the release of "Spider-Man" on May 3 was not only a box office record breaker but a resounding triumph for two wily Israeli entrepreneurs.
Ask Boris Dralyuk about his student days at Fairfax High School and the impish young man with startlingly blue eyes will mockingly compare himself to one of the great anti-heroes of literature. "I know about the experiences of Saul Bellow's Augie March and the little Jewish kids growing up in tough urban areas, but Los Angeles is not one of those places. There is very little in common between the Lower East Side and Los Angeles. It's not a battle to grow up here. It is not a struggle."
In recent years, Israeli writer Amos Oz has become as well-known for his liberal political views as for his fiction. In his newest book, "The Same Sea," he has created a novel infused with literary artistry that never directly addresses politics, but allows them to hover undiscussed in the corners of his character's lives. "The Same Sea," a complex weaving of narratives written in verse and prose about a family coping with loss, features Oz himself as "The Narrator," and he reveals for the first time the suicide of his mother when he was 12. The immense vulnerability Oz describes in himself also drives all of his characters in "The Same Sea."
In a compelling collection of 19th and 20th century images and objects, the Skirball Cultural Center's new exhibit of photographs, lithographs and archaeological artifacts tells the story of Israel as, literally, a "holy land" -- a place that has long held fascination for the three monotheistic faiths, academics and Western tourists hoping to discover the exotic world of the East.
On the first day of the 2000 Democratic National Convention in Los Angeles, a small group of Jewish men and women used the occasion to raise their voices in protest against what they saw as the growing economic divide in this country and the increasingly centrist policies of the Democratic Party.