Browsing Tag



Gimmel, the Finnish Girl Band With a Hebrew Name

By On May 12, 2017

Most Jews know gimmel as the best Hebrew letter on a dreidel — you know, the one that gives the lucky spinner the entire pot of chocolate gelt. But all Hebrew letters… Read More


The Jew Who Taught the Mormons Hebrew

By On March 25, 2014

Joseph Smith, founder of the Mormon Church, wanted to learn Hebrew. In 1835 he set up the School for the Elders where Mormon men were taught grammar, writing, and history. But not long… Read More


The Jewish Diva Who Played the Indian Princess

By On March 11, 2014

Gifted with one of those rare, true contralto voices—deep, rich, and haunting—Sophie Braslau was the beautiful daughter of a Russian émigré physician who was ranked with the most celebrated singers of her time. A musical prodigy, she… Read More

The Anti-Yiddish Riots in Palestinian Tel Aviv

The Anti-Yiddish Riots in Palestinian Tel Aviv

By On January 29, 2014

When Mayn Yidishe Mame (“My Jewish Mother”), one of the first feature-length Yiddish talkies, arrived on Tel Aviv screens in 1930, pre-State Palestine had a sizable population of Yiddish speakers. But once the lights went out… Read More


“This American Life” Goes Israeli

By On August 16, 2013

A story about a classical composer who, after sustaining a brain injury, had to teach herself how to listen to music again. A man standing by the side of the road in… Read More


How Dirty Can You Get (in Hebrew)?

By On August 22, 2012

There’s something about the comedy hip-hop group The Lonely Island that screams Jewish. The group is an assemblage of three comedians who’ve made videos together since junior high school, and eventually became regular features on Saturday Night… Read More


Log On to the Dead Sea Scrolls

By On June 22, 2012

Lately, there’s been a push to digitize everything–old family movies, record collections. Our lives are fleeting and fast. We want to save our cherished memories, and somehow make them last forever. So it shouldn’t… Read More


Flirting, Israeli Style

By On June 14, 2012

Like your craziest high-school friend, the TV show Coupling will try anything once. This British sitcom is actually a love story, a fictionalized version of the romance between writer Steven Moffat (currently the showrunner of Doctor… Read More


The Slam Poet Goes to Israel

By On March 19, 2012

“In the beginning was the word,” says Bob Holman, a slam poet and founder of the Bowery Poetry Club–one of New York‘s premiere poetry venues. “God said it. But who was He speaking to? Christians? Muslims? Jews?”… Read More


A Jew from Kentucky

By On February 7, 2012

Dan Bern’s folk songs bear more than a passing resemblance to Bob Dylan‘s–a high-pitched, sometimes scratchy voice is the most obvious similarity. But Dylan was neither as subversive, nor as laugh-out-loud funny, as Bern.… Read More


Faking Hebrew for Beginners

By On January 20, 2012

One of the best ways to develop an appreciation for the uniqueness of the Hebrew language is to play Hebrew Scrabble. Yes, Scrabble. You see, many Hebrew words are simple–variations on three-letter roots, with prefixes, suffixes, and… Read More


Carols for the Hebrew Month of Elul

By On September 9, 2011

Craig Taubman is mostly known as a musician. But each year for the past six years, he’s been inviting leading Jewish bloggers, along with celebrities such as Lady Gaga, Barack Obama, and Eminem… Read More