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Meron Medzini, Sheila Jelen, Amalia Ran, and Russell A. Stone

Neil Caplan and Yaakov Sharett, eds., My Struggle for Peace: The Diary of Moshe Sharett, 1953–1956 (Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 2019), 3 vols. 1,950 pp. Hardback, $125.00.

Adia Mendelson-Maoz, Borders, Territories, and Ethics: Hebrew Literature in the Shadow of the Intifada (West Lafayette, IN: Purdue University Press, 2018), 252 pp. Paperback, $30.00. Kindle, $26.00.

Alejandro Paz, Latinos in Israel: Language and Unexpected Citizenship (Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 2018), 327 pp. Hardback, $75.00. Paperback, $32.00. Kindle, $20.00.

Neta Oren, Israel’s National Identity: The Changing Ethos of Conflict (Boulder, CO: Lynne Rienner Publishers, 2019), 291 pp. Hardback, $65.00.

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Rabbi John D. Rayner

Liturgist as Correspondent

Eric L. Friedland

Rabbi John D. Rayner was prolific not only of learned articles and challenging sermons, but a frequent and engaging correspondent. It is through his multitudinous letters that we gain inestimable insight into the dynamic of his path-breaking liturgy-making, his raising of disciples in England and abroad, and his commitment to critical Jewish scholarship combined with utter religious honesty. His love of the Hebrew language, his devotion to family, and his irrepressible brand of humour, too, shone through his missives, both by airmail and by email.

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Albert H. Friedlander, Uri Ben Alexander, and Alan Sillitoe

Holocaust Theology: A Reader, compiled and edited by Dan Cohn-Sherbok, University of Exeter Press, 2002, 432 pp., paperback £17.99 hardback £47.50. ISBN 0 85989 624 2

The Rebbe the Messiah and the Scandal of Orthodox Indifference, David Berger, London, The Littman Library of Jewish Civilization, 2001, 195 pp, ISBN 1-874774-88-9

Haskalah and History: The Emergence of a Modern Jewish Historical Consciousness, Shmuel Feiner, translated by Chaya Naor and Sondra Silverston, Oxford, The Littman Library of Jewish Civilization, 2002, 404 pp, ISBN 1-874774-43-9

The Oxford Book of Hebrew Stories, edited by Glenda Abramson, Oxford University Press, 1996, £17.99. ISBN 0-19-214206-2

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Fred Morgan

I entered Leo Baeck College in September 1979 as 50 percent of the Class of 1984; my co-student was William Wolff. It would be hard to conceive of two less similar people, yet we hit it off like a house on fire and remained close mates throughout our College years. I came from an academic background; my general Jewish knowledge was almost nil, but I'd already mastered Biblical Hebrew. Willie, a tabloid journalist, was steeped in Yiddishkeit but couldn't differentiate between a sh'va na' and a sh'va nach. Our lecturers that first year must have been in hysterics over us.

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Sybil Sheridan

My first day at Leo Baeck College, I arrived early, dressed soberly but impressively to demonstrate my serious intent. I was shown into a room where I sat with two other students among the drawings and misspelled Hebrew words of a West London Synagogue cheder class. Feeling frightfully shy, I did not introduce myself to my two colleagues, and they, being equally reticent did not introduce themselves to me. So there we sat and waited for some twenty minutes in total silence. Rabbi Albert Friedlander z'l finally came in, blinked, and asked what we were doing.

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Ariel Friedlander, Michal Friedlander, Noam Friedlander, Lionel Blue, Eveline Goodman-Thau, Paul Oestreicher, Thomas Salamon, Tony Bayfield, Sidney Brichto, Michael Shire, and Jane Clements

Albert Hoschander Friedlander, rabbi: born Berlin 10 May 1927; ordained rabbi 1952; Rabbi, United Hebrew Congregation, Fort Smith, Arkansas 1952–56; Rabbi, Temple B’nai Brith, Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania 1956–61; Religious Counsellor, Columbia University 1961–66; Founder Rabbi, Jewish Center of the Hamptons, East Hampton, New York 1961–66; Rabbi, Wembley Liberal Synagogue 1966–71; Lecturer, Leo Baeck College 1967–71, Director 1971–82, Dean 1982–2004; Senior Rabbi, Westminster Synagogue 1971–97 (Rabbi Emeritus); Editor, European Judaism 1982–2004; OBE 2001; President, Council of Christians and Jews 2003–04; married 1961 Evelyn Philipp (three daughters); died London 8 July 2004.

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A Political Theology of the Empty Tomb

Christianity and the Return of the Sacred

Roberto Farneti

This article argues a case against the theory of the sacred put forward by the French anthropologist René Girard. In particular, Girard seems to have obliterated one of the tenets of Christian theology, namely, the doctrine of Christ's ascension, in accord with his critical reading of Paul's letter to the Hebrews, which contains a rare emphasis on Christ's departure from the world. This article adopts a 'neo-Hobbesian' perspective in understanding the return of the sacred and fosters a 'political theology of the empty tomb', where the doctrine of Christ's ascension is called upon to again play a major theological role as a workable antidote to the contemporary resurgence of the sacred.

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Rachel Werczberger and Boaz Huss

On 17 June 2014, in the heart of the Etzion Bloc (Gush Etzion) in the West Bank, the site of the abduction of three Israeli teens by Palestinian terrorists the week before, an unusual event took place. Several Jewish-Israeli and Palestinian peace activists, a few rabbis, and a Muslim Sufi sheikh gathered in order to pray for the safe return of the kidnapped youths. The group prayed both in Hebrew and Arabic, reciting psalms and Quran-based Muslim prayers. “Our hearts are torn at this moment, and my heart goes out the mothers of these children,” said Sheikh Ibrahim Abu Al-Hawa, before reciting the first chapter of the Quran, the Fatiha. He continued, “There is a wall between our two nations, and we hope to remove the wall separating the hearts of humans” (Miller 2014). He concluded his speech by proclaiming “God is One” in Arabic and Hebrew, followed by the young Rabbi Yossi Froman (son of the late Rabbi Menachem Froman), who stood beside him.

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Uri Cohen

This article focuses on the practices that led to the elimination of the possibility of establishing an independent academic sector—professional-academic colleges—in the first years after the founding of the State of Israel in 1948. This sector, the "service tradition" of non-university institutions, focuses on meeting economic and social needs through professional and vocational education. The only academic model in Israel that evolved under the control of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem (HUJ) was the comprehensive university model. By describing the ongoing problems of the School of Law and Economics (SLE) in Tel-Aviv, we can learn about the close relations that were established between politicians and the HUJ and the paradox that has resulted in the rapid growth of the SLE but also its integration with the comprehensive university.

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Peter Salinger

The growth of the Hebraica/Judaica collections, which form part of the Ancient Near East Semitics and Judaica Section, reflect to a large extent the policies and resources of the library over the years, with the addition of some significant donations. The establishment of the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS) in 1917 came as a response to the long-felt need for a separate institution, as a constituent college of the University of London, for the study of the languages and cultures of Asia and Africa, in view of Britain’s worldwide interests. The nucleus of the Hebrew collection of the library was formed by transfers from University College, London. For a number of years, however, growth was slow, as the library’s budget and staff complement was very small, particularly until after the Second World War.