‘Twas the Night Before Hanukkah

November 30, 2012
By
twas-the-night

In comedian Lenny Bruce’s famous “Jewish vs. Goyish” sketch, Broadway star Eddie Cantor is deemed goyish, along with Kool-Aid and the Marine Corps. You might say that Cantor, though born to Russian-Jewish immigrants, was asking for it: In a 1934 radio broadcast he introduced Americans to the infuriatingly catchy “Santa Claus is Coming…

Read more »

David Rakoff: Half Full, in Our Book

November 29, 2012
By
David-Rakoff-Half-Empty

Long and proud is the Jewish tradition of using sharp humor in the face of hopeless tragedy. David Rakoff – humorist, essayist, and self-described “mega Jewish writer” – was a master of this tactic. Rakoff died of cancer in August 2012 at the age of 47, and the final book published during his lifetime (his…

Read more »

All Around-the-Jewniverse Hanukkah Gift Guide

November 28, 2012
By
cholent-the-game

With Hanukkah just around the corner, it’s time to dig up some gifts for your friends and family. Lucky for you, we’ve scoured the Jewniverse for the funniest, wackiest, and smartest Jewish gifts around. Check it: First: Doll Yourself Up From ugly Hanukkah sweaters ($60-$65) and Manischewitz Onesies ($18) to gelt boxers ($14) and novelty beard and…

Read more »

The Ugly Hanukkah Sweater

November 27, 2012
By
ugly-sweater

Everybody can spot the Dreaded Christmas Sweater from miles away.  Be it worn by Bill Cosby through the better part of the eighties, by Colin Firth in That Scene in Bridget Jones’ Diary circa 2001, by a total character at your annual holiday party, or by your hipster roommate as his version of business…

Read more »

Jews Explain the New Testament

November 26, 2012
By
jewish-annotated-new-testam

What’s the best way for a Jew to read the New Testament? Though some maintain that Jews should stay away from the Christian holy book altogether, many believe that it’s an important read for anyone living in a predominantly Christian country. It also happens to be chock-full of Jewish references. (The…

Read more »

Tabletop Torah

November 23, 2012
By
tabletop-torah1

God has more in common with a bottle of dish soap than you might think. Or at least Brooklyn-based puppeteer and educator Ora Fruchter wants you to think so. Through Creatures Teach Torah, Fruchter uses various puppetry methods to explore and teach biblical stories [video trailer here]. One of these methods is object…

Read more »

The Kimberley Plan

November 22, 2012
By
Kimberley

In 1939, Isaac Nachman Steinberg—lawyer, ex-Bolshevik, former comrade of Vladimir Lenin—arrived in Perth, Western Australia. His objective: to establish a homeland and safe haven for thousands of Jewish refugees in The Kimberley, in Australia’s far north-west. Steinberg was the founder of the Freeland League and a proponent of territorialism, a political movement that sought…

Read more »

Star and Shamrock

November 21, 2012
By
star-and-shamrock

Some combinations are obvious: peanut butter and jelly, rock and roll, Bert and Ernie. Others aren’t quite so apparent. Take, for instance, classic Ashkenazi Jewish cuisine and traditional Irish fare. Washington DC restaurateurs Jason Feld, Mark Menard and Mike Schuster thought up this unusual fusion and are bringing it to life at…

Read more »

Fagin the Jew

November 20, 2012
By
fagin2

The antihero of Charles Dickens’s Oliver Twist is the “villainous-looking and sinister” Jewish moneylender, Fagin. Fagin is referred to as “the Jew” 257 times throughout the first two-thirds of the novel, often in the context of him doing something nasty, salivating over his gold, or beating poor Oliver. While working on the final third of the novel,…

Read more »

Dream of Scipio

November 19, 2012
By
scipio

When you think of Provence you probably think of the region’s famous French scenery and wine. But when novelist Iain Pears thinks of Provence he thinks of its deep—and often dark—history. His 2002 novel The Dream of Scipio weaves together three Provencal stories. One concerns a Gallic aristocrat obsessed with preserving Roman civilization in…

Read more »

A Cookbook Called Jerusalem

November 16, 2012
By
jerusalem-cookbook-jewniver

Chefs Yotam Ottolenghi and Sami Tamimi were both born in Jerusalem in 1968. Both men had mothers who served lavish breakfasts with mystifying ease, and both inhaled falafel on their midday walks home from school, spoiling their appetites for “real” lunch.  In many ways they led parallel lives, with one crucial difference: Ottolenghi grew…

Read more »

Jewrotica

November 15, 2012
By
jewrotica

What constitutes “Jewish erotica,” exactly? Does it need to feature ritual items?  Must the deed take place during a bagel brunch? Does the work just need a Jewish author, or does the sex itself need to be positively spiritual? The recently launched Jewrotica.org posits its own answer to this question — by…

Read more »

Jewniverse Email Newsletter