A round-up of three new and notable articles in Jewish studies.
How an obscure Chinese fruit became a centerpiece of Sukkot and a symbol of Judaism.
One of the most spectacular books of medieval Ashkenaz, the Leipzig Mahzor, contains a stunning illumination for the opening of Yom Kippur.
One of Lea Goldberg’s last poems was inspired by a prayer from the Yom Kippur liturgy.
Zionism has long based its claim to sovereignty on the universal right to national self-determination, and the phrase “like all other nations” has been incorporated into Israel’s Declaration of Independence, yet the goal of “normalization” has proven to be much more complicated than most early Zionists had thought.
After the revolution, Marc Chagall—somewhat implausibly—became plenipotentiary for the affairs of art in the province of Vitebsk. Against all probability, the avant-garde bloomed in a provincial Russian city dominated by Jewish culture.
As Mark Cohen’s new biography reminds us, “Broadway” Billy Rose was America’s master showman for a quarter of a century. When a friend told Saul Bellow how Rose had saved a fellow Jew from an Italian prison in 1939 but refused to speak with him afterward, Bellow knew he had a story.
The Melting Pot and the Cheshire Cat, Yom Kippur Dance, The Courts and the People, and More
Jerusalem-based writer Benjamin Balint has crafted a wise and eloquent study of Kafka around the eight-year battle in Israeli courts over Max Brod’s literary estate.
Two new books, different in tone but matched in caliber, show Israelis making their way as best they can in America and in life.