Monthly Archives: November 2009

Post-Thanksgiving Roundup

Here are a few things you may have missed while in your turkey-induced food coma.

By Sarah Breger

Tony Judt waxes nostalgic for the bad food of his youth, including his grandmother’s Friday night dinner of potatoes, gefillte fish and compote. Warning: he shows no mercy for Jewish cuisine and  describes his grandmother as someone who “had never met a green vegetable she could not torture to death in a saucepan.” [NYRB]

The Chicago Jewish News covers the ongoing tenure debacle of Israeli-born professor Zafra Lerman. Lerman is the founder of the Malta Conference, a program where scientists from all over the Middle East, including Israel, Egypt, Iran, Saudi Arabia, Jordan, Lebanon, Kuwait, the Palestinian territories, United Arab Emirates, Bahrain, Qatar and Turkey meet to create cross cultural understanding. [Chicago Jewish News]

Details magazine praises the rise of the “hot Jewish girl”. Jezebel then destroys the piece paragraph by paragraph. [Details, Jezebel]

Sarah Palin discusses Joe Lieberman in new memoir

By Sarah Breger

After Sarah Palin’s provocative statement last week on Israel’s settlement expansion and her belief that “more and more Jewish people will be flocking to Israel in the days and weeks and months ahead,” we were curious to see what she had to say about Jews and Israel in Going Rogue, her new book.

Continue reading

Add pomegranate to your Thanksgiving menu

By April N. Baskin

I still remember the taste of the fresh cup of freshly squeezed pomegranate juice I bought from old Chasid pushing a tiny wooden cart on a chilly day in Tzfat last winter. I love the tangy flavor of fresh pomegranate and with it being the pomegranate season, there are endless opportunities to indulge.

In our September/October issue, cookbook author Joan Nathan explored the rich history of the ever-appealing pomegranate, taking special note of its presence in Persian cuisine as well as her family’s favorite ways of enjoying the treasured fruit:

“I remember my children’s delight when a Persian family taught us the technique of drinking the juice straight from the hard shell. They rolled a pomegranate along a countertop until all the crunchy sounds stopped, then pierced it with a skewer, inserted a straw into the hole and drank.” Continue reading

On The Origins of Species turns 150

By Sarah Breger

Today’s the 150th anniversary of the publication of Charles Darwin’s On the Origin of Species. But 150 years later the relationship between science and religion remains contentious.

In 2005 and 2006, Moment Magazine correspondent Jennie Rothenberg profiled and reviewed the works of Nosson Slifkin, an Orthodox rabbi whose views on evolution have branded him a heretic in certain Orthodox circles. As Rothenberg describes,

“One can imagine him lying awake at night, brooding over the gulf between science and scripture, the words of various rabbis swirling through his head. The result is a clear-eyed vision of the natural sciences as seen through the lens of Jewish tradition.

Read about this “theistic Darwinian evolutionist” here and a review of his work here

Happy Monkey Day!

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Debbie Wasserman Schultz Speaks Out on Mammogram Controversy

By Sarah Breger

The recent release of an expert panel’s recommendation that mammography screenings be scaled back has drawn fire from women, lawmakers and health care professionals.

But for Debbie Wasserman Schultz, in this case, the personal is political.

Wasserman Schultz was diagnosed with breast cancer at age 41, which she discovered though a self-exam. In March, Schultz introduced a bill to teach women about early detection.

The Democractic senator from Florida has been making the rounds on political talk shows attacking the guidelines. Stopping by MSNBC’s Chris Matthews two nights ago she said: Continue reading

This Week’s Links

By Sarah Breger

The White House is planning on cutting invitations to the annual Hanukkah party by half. Shockingly, Jews in Washington are complaining. [JPost]

Moment columnist Eric Alterman declares war on The New Republic, saying the publication is bad for the Jews. [theNation]

But the real question is: Are vampires good for the Jews? Twilight screenwriter says yes. [The Jewish Journal]

Rabbi David Wolpe disagrees. [The Jewish Journal]

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Hillary Clinton Crushing on David Miliband

By Sarah Breger

Pssst…H has a crush on D…pass it on. In a profile in this month’s Vogue, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton revealed that she is smitten with British Foreign Secretary—and this month’s Moment profile (and cover story)—David Miliband.

“Well, if you saw him it would be a big crush. I mean, he is so vibrant, vital, attractive, smart. He’s really a good guy. And he’s so young!”

Miliband seems to be enamored of Clinton as well:

“She applies intellect but also psychology to the dossiers that she’s studying. She uses her experience in a very impressive way. She brings it to bear in a way that enriches a conversation but doesn’t swamp it. She learns from history without being trapped by it. I think it’s also important to say that she’s delightful to deal with one on one. She’s someone who laughs and can tease, and she’s got perspective as well.”

But does he like her, like her?

Read about the object of Clinton’s affection here.

Costco to sell the Torah (but not in bulk)

By Sarah Breger

Costco, the retail megastore, plans to sell a special illustrated Torah, JTA reported yesterday. The Torah will appeal to Jews and Christians who don’t have access to Jewish bookshops, according to the Torah’s distributer Neal Warnick. “It deserves to be in Costco,” he said. Moses would be proud.

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Study Confirms Suspicion that Jews and New Yorkers are Actually Interchangeable

Yiddish_Magnetic_KitBy Sarah Breger

A new study released last week finds that outside of New York, Jews are more likely than non-Jews to have elements of a New York accent.

“The Survey of American Jewish Language and Identity” reports the results of a survey of 25,179 American Jews and 4,874 American Gentiles. There are many intriguing finds in the study, including that older Jews are more likely to know Yiddish words while younger Jews are more likely to know Hebrew words.

Interestingly, “Jewish terms” are being used for religious rituals, replacing their American translations, the survey found. Jews of all religious stripes are increasingly using the term “shul” instead of synagogue” and “leyn” instead of “read Torah.” Although the authors of the survey are not sure why… Continue reading

This Week’s Links

By Sarah Breger

Ari_Teman_hero_mAri Teman, the founder of JCorps, won the first Jewish Community Hero award this week. JCorps is an organization that runs programs for young Jewish volunteers in cities around the world. [JTA]

TNRtv put together a video on the anti-Semitic group Westboro Baptist Church as they protested against Jews and gays outside synagogues and schools in New York this week. The video shows that with the Jews from Great Neck the Westboro Baptist church may have met their match. [TNR]

Frederic Aranda’s gripping photographs of the Lubavitch community on Tablet. [Tablet]

The Forward announces their picks for the top 50 Jews of the year. You are not on it. [Forward]

Time’s Joe Klein and The New Republic’s Jamie Kirchick’s discussion on Israel and the media turns nasty at the GA. [WAPO]


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