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Letters

Mark Bauerlein’s account of the English department’s decline in “Truth, Reading, Decadence” (June/July) makes for good reading. It is true to my experience in the field of literary study and helps give the tragedy our discipline has undergone intelligible structure. For those unfamiliar with . . . . Continue Reading »

Briefly Noted

Seder Night, the lengthy ­ritualistic meal of the first night of Passover, is considered one of the most important events in the Jewish calendar. Mark Gerson’s new work underscores—with great panache and enthusiasm—perhaps the most underappreciated facet of the ­evening: the . . . . Continue Reading »

Mere Judaism

Seventy years ago, the European émigré Chaim Grade (pronounced “GRAH-deh”) published a short story that would secure his place in the pantheon of great Yiddish writers of the twentieth century. “Mayn krig mit hersh rasseyner,” usually rendered in English as “My Quarrel with Hersh . . . . Continue Reading »

True Jewish Lit

The title of Adam Kirsch’s survey of twentieth-­century Jewish literature can be read in two ways. In historical terms, the Holocaust was the curse. The founding of Israel and the welcome Jews received in America were the blessings. But as a literary matter, the blessing and the curse were the . . . . Continue Reading »

A Treatise on Two Cities

Tertullian’s question—“What has Athens to do with Jerusalem?”—has generally been asked by Christians wondering to what extent they can draw on Greek wisdom. In answer, many theologians analogized Greek philosophy to Hebrew faith: Both were incomplete but preparatory. Clement of . . . . Continue Reading »

Why I Keep Kosher

If you yourself are not obliged to observe Kosher, or if you simply elect not to (only a minority of Jews actually do), you must have wondered from time to time: What’s the point? You can eat meat after dairy products, but you cannot consume dairy after meat? (And mixed together—a . . . . Continue Reading »

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