They Called Her Rebbe

December 10, 2013
By
They Called Her Rebbe

While rifling through the bargain bin at your local bookstore for a dime novel to read on the plane, you come across what looks like just the right smut: a classically pulpy woman on the cover, eyes cast down to the text in front of her. Even the title, with its exaggerated…

Read more »

A Surprising New History of “Fiddler on the Roof”

December 9, 2013
By
wonder-of-wonder

Maybe you first heard Tevye break into song when you watched Fiddler on the Roof on VHS in your grandparents’ living room. Maybe you sat in the audience on opening night at the Imperial Theater in 1964. Maybe, before all of that, you read Sholem Aleichem‘s story “Tevye the Dairyman” in shule, or two decades later your cousin walked down…

Read more »

The Ghost Shtetl of Trochenbrod

December 6, 2013
By
Lost-town

Once upon a time there was a shtetl named Trochenbrod. In its heyday, Trochenbrod, which is located in Western Ukraine just 30 kilometers northeast of the city of Lutsk, was home to approximately 5,000 Jews, with seven synagogues, and a rich farming culture. In typically frank Yiddish fashion, Trochenbrod means “bread without butter.” And…

Read more »

Talmudic sex scandals for $2

December 5, 2013
By
Donate $2 Today!

Join the Jewniverse/MyJewishLearning annual $2 campaign! Your donation allows us to keep on sharing all of the weird, wacky and inspirational sides of the Jewniverse. And c’mon, we’re just asking $2.

Read more »

Nude Photos + Bible = Art

December 4, 2013
By
bigal

The words of the Bible calligraphed carefully onto…skin? This edgy sounding art project is actually pretty old-school: a Torah scroll is sheepskin with calligraphy on it—but Israeli artist Ronit Bigal has taken the idea of Torah on skin to a new and breathtakingly beautiful place. Bigal takes digital photos of the body close enough that it’s…

Read more »

Anti-Semitic Hatemail Never Looked This Good

December 3, 2013
By
hatemail

Hatemail is probably the most bizarre book to ever grace a coffee table. Oversized, gorgeous, and with vivid and full-color matte printing, it’s packed with turn-of-the-century art and extensive scholarly commentary…about anti-Semitic picture postcards. There’s an 1899 German postcard that depicts a trio of “Glucksschwein,” Jews dressed up as pigs, which is…

Read more »

The Slippery History of Jews & Olive Oil

December 2, 2013
By
olive-oil

What’s so holy about olive oil? On Hanukkah, olive oil is a part of the story. According to the Talmud the Maccabees only found one sealed vessel of consecrated olive oil with which to light the Menorah. To celebrate the eight days of overtime that oil worked, we break out the oil for our…

Read more »

The Surprisingly Wide World of Hasidic Fashion

November 29, 2013
By
jews-of-today3

Have you ever noticed the difference between one Hasid’s hat and another? Michael Levin hadn’t either—until he moved to Williamsburg, Brooklyn, in 2007 and met his new neighbors. Levin, who was raised secular, was fascinated by the astounding 19th-century stylings of the Hasidic community, and set out to both understand and capture…

Read more »

Yiddish Theater for the Kindergarten Set

November 28, 2013
By
rivka-takes-a-bow

A late-in-life career change isn’t so unusual. A mathematician who devotes his life to klezmer music. A full-time mom who starts her own business. But even in that context, what Betty Rosenberg Perlov has done is pretty unusual. Or, we should say, when she’s done it. Perlov just published her first book. At age 96.…

Read more »

The Secret History of Hanukkah

November 27, 2013
By
secret-hanukkah

Everything your Hebrew school taught you about the miracle of Hanukkah is a lie. According to the Book of Maccabees, which most scholars believe was written shortly after the Maccabean revolt, Hanukkah was born of another holiday: Sukkot. When the Maccabees finally retook the Temple in the month of Kislev, they decided to celebrate Sukkot, the…

Read more »

“All I Want for Thanksgivukkah is Jews” Mariah Carey Parody

November 26, 2013
By
all-i-want

DISCLAIMER: This video is rated MW for Meshugganah Writers, OS for off-key singing, and ES for excessive schmaltziness. Intrigued? With a lot of chutzpah and a little shtick, a group of four coworkers got into the spirit of Thanksgivukkah and created an adorable spoof of “All I want for Christmas”…

Read more »

The Next Best Jewish Idea

November 26, 2013
By
#makeithappen

Is a thousand bucks all it would take to launch your great Jewish idea into a great Jewish project? If so, take heart. A new initiative from the Schusterman Philanthropic Network is offering up to 50 grants of $1000 each to fund a wide variety of projects that will have an impact on Jewish…

Read more »