Support First Things by turning your adblocker off or by making a  donation. Thanks!

The Teacher Of Morality At Harwich Beach

From Web Exclusives

Young Sam Johnson once balked when his father asked him to attend to his bookstall. “Pride was the source of that refusal, and the remembrance of it was painful,” he later recalled. On the fiftieth anniversary of the offense Johnson returned to the Uttoxeter-market and stood for an hour bareheaded in the pouring rain. What do you, modern Orthodox reader, make of this scene of remorse and expiation? … Continue Reading »

The Beginning of Wisdom

From the Aug/Sept 2009 Print Edition

And from There You Shall Seek by Joseph Soloveitchik Ktav, 230 pages, $29.50 Near the end of Courage to Be , Paul Tillich writes: “God as a subject makes me into an object which is nothing more than an object. He deprives me of my subjectivity because he is all-powerful and all-knowing. I . . . . Continue Reading »

Oz’s Israel

From the August/September 2005 Print Edition

A Tale of Love and Darkness by amos oz harcourt, 544 pp, $26 Just over forty years ago, a university literature student named Amos Oz summoned the courage to ring S.Y. Agnon’s doorbell. Upon hearing the young man’s name, the Nobel Prize–winning novelist asked: “Aren’t you the child who, . . . . Continue Reading »

Orthodoxy and Reticence

From the February 2005 Print Edition

It has been forty years since my revered teacher Rabbi Joseph Soloveitchik, popularly known as “the Rav” by his followers in the modern wing of American Orthodoxy, presented his paper “Confrontation” to the Rabbinical Council of America. The paper was later published in the Council’s . . . . Continue Reading »