November 10: The First Hebrew Novel

Joseph Perl, whose 1819 epistolary novel ridiculing khasidism, Revealer of Secrets (Megaleh Temirim), is considered by some to be the first modern novel in Hebrew (Perl translated it into Yiddish to make it accessible to Jews), was born on this date in 1773 in Galicia. He was a follower of khasidism as a boy, but wrote […]

Read More

September 10: Simon Dubnow

Simon Dubnow, one of the founders of modern Jewish historical scholarship and a prolific memoirist and essayist about secular Jewish life and politics in Eastern Europe, was murdered at age 81 by the Nazis during the liquidation of the Riga Ghetto on this date in 1941. Dubnow was an advocate the Haskalah, or Jewish Enlightenment, […]

Read More

Is Israel Really “The Jewish State”?

by Bennett Muraskin OVER SIX MILLION Jews live in Israel, the largest Jewish community in the world. Its flag is a Jewish symbol; its national anthem appeals to the “Jewish soul;” Jewish holidays are national holidays; the official language is Hebrew. Jerusalem, the capital of ancient Judea, is the also the capital of modern Israel, […]

Read More