• Top 50 (okay, 10) ideas for filling the Newsweek rabbis list void

    As every rabbi in America no doubt knows by now, the Newsweek/Daily Beast Top 50 Rabbis list is no more. The list’s founders/authors wrote earlier this week that they had decided to discontinue the annual ranking because it “got out of control.” Not only did the list, launched in 2007 and released each year shortly before… More ▸

  • AIPAC vs. Oscars

    Anti-Semites say the Jews control Hollywood. And they say the Jews control Washington. But can we do both at once? The biggest event in Israel advocacy — the American Israel Public Affairs Committee’s annual policy conference — kicks off this Sunday, the same day as Hollywood’s biggest night, the Academy Awards. According to the AIPAC… More ▸

  • From the Archive: ‘Schindler’s List’ Oscar anniversary

    This year marks the 20th anniversary of “Schindler’s List” dominating  the Academy Awards. The Steven Spielberg film about a German Nazi party member who saved 1,200 Jews during the Holocaust has become a classic. Its award-winning musical score was even used recently, amid some controversy, in a routine by Russian figure skater Yulia Lipnitskaia at the… More ▸

  • The Forward snubs Walter and apple pie — and a hunky Jewish QB!

    With Christian Bale and Leonardo DiCaprio both in the running for best actor for playing Jews behaving badly — the Forward has released its “11 Best Performances by Non-Jewish Actors Playing Jews in the Movies.” There is nothing like a movie list to send me down the rabbit hole (see my magnum opus on Tablet’s… More ▸

  • Blast from the past: Cossacks, hundreds and ‘pogromists’ ride again

    For many Ashkenazi Jews, Russia and Ukraine are part of a nebulous entity known as “the Old Country.” A large proportion of us, myself included, have relatives who made the trek overseas to America, often leaving behind a bloody, troubled past. In recent weeks, as Russia and Ukraine have been in the media spotlight, symbols… More ▸

  • Conservative, Reform rabbis: Robinson’s Arch transfer plan ‘infuriating and unacceptable’

    This week has seen a fair bit of news on the heretofore confidential negotiations surrounding the future of Robinson’s Arch, the area of the Western Wall open to non-Orthodox prayer. The Israeli Reform and Masorti (Conservative) movements, along with women’s prayer group Women of the Wall, have been negotiating for months with the Israeli government… More ▸

  • Orthodox groups mum on Arizona religious exemption bill

    Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer yesterday vetoed a bill that would have permitted businesses to refuse service to gays if doing so would violate their religious convictions. The Anti-Defamation League commended her for the veto, and the Jewish Community Relations Council in southern Arizona advocated against the bill. From the JCRC release earlier this week: While we… More ▸

  • Elsewhere: Chabad ‘Shofar’ alarm, Dara Horn’s history, Jews for Wagner

    Chabad sounds alarm: Popular ‘Call of the Shofar’ workshops, which mix Judaism and Eastern thought, worry Lubavitch leadership. (N.Y. Jewish Week) Dara Horn on tech, history and her new novel: Novelist Dara Horn opens up about Jewish history, pacing, plot and how she writes. (Religion & Politics) Jews who love Wagner: Jewish support for Wagner goes way back, and the… More ▸