In December 2014, at the annual Association for Jewish Studies conference, Abraham Socher sat down for a public conversation with Leon Wieseltier. It was, as it happens, just after the much-discussed New Republic debacle, and Wieseltier, who had served as TNR’s literary editor for the last 31 years, was characteristically witty and reflective. They talked about his teacher the great historian Yosef Yerushalmi, David Ben-Gurion’s grammatical precision, the cultural responsibilities of intellectuals, and much else. Please enjoy the video, below.
Why did the prestigious publishing house Gallimard want to publish three vilely anti-Semitic pamphlets by Louis-Ferdinand Céline? And is he still worth reading?
Eating very long breakfasts, lunches, and dinners with dozens of aging members of the Greatest Generation was the best part of Arkush's teaching experience.
Bnei Brak, where yeshivot and synagogues were kept open far too long, accounted for 16 percent of all Israeli COVID-19 cases and a comparable percentage of fatalities despite comprising only 2 percent of the Israeli population. We haredim must radically rethink our approach to public policy—and holiness.
That Judah, the great victor of the Hanukkah story, ultimately died fighting the Seleucids is something that surprisingly few Jews know. And were the Maccabees actually underdogs?