Category Archives: book reviews

Book Matters

Book Matters The Original Bambi: The Story of a Life in the Forest By Felix Salten, translated & introduced by Jack Zipes, Illustrated by Alenka Sottler. Bambi was the first book I truly loved when it was read to me … Continue reading

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Lionel and Henry: In Fact and Fiction

There is just one case I know of where two brilliant young writers published dueling short stories about each other, in which each is the protagonist and his best friend the antagonist.  Who were the writers who would do such … Continue reading

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Book Matters

Book Matters Not God’s Type: An Atheist Academic Lays Down Her Arms By Holly Ordway This book was first brought to my attention by the writer Johan Herrenberg, who wondered whether it was another book by a woman in the … Continue reading

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Stand on the Rock

Stand on the Rock If I could, I surely would Stand on the rock where Moses stood … I don’t know which rock the singer had in mind.  The great rocky crags of Sinai?  Some low-lying monadnock near the Burning … Continue reading

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Book Matters

Book Matters People Love Dead Jews: Reports from a Haunted Present By Dara Horn The only other book by Dara Horn that I’ve read is Eternal Life, which is a kind of romantic fiction with a difference.  In that book, … Continue reading

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Book Matters

The Greater Journey: Americans in Paris By David McCullough “I’d like to see Paris before I die.” That’s how W. C. Fields, about to be hanged in “My Little Chickadee,” answers when he’s asked if he has any last wish. … Continue reading

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Explain This.

Explain This. If the roof falls in or the ship is taking water, I’m the teammate you’ll want to have around.  I’ll do anything that seems to need doing and I won’t try to be important while I’m about it.  … Continue reading

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Light on the Longest Hatred

Light on the Longest Hatred I’d intended to devote this column to leisurely reflections on what I sometimes term “the Jewish assignment” in history.  Reflections prompted by a biography I’m now reading, with the title, Rabbi Leo Baeck: Living a … Continue reading

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Book Matters

Book Matters Albion’s Seed: Four British Folkways in America By David Hackett Fischer The four British folkways in the title are the Puritans in the Massachusetts Bay Colony, the Quakers in Pennsylvania, the Royalists in Virginia, and the Scotch-Irish in … Continue reading

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My First Teaching Non-Anxiety Dream

“Moses and the Tablets”Rembrandt, 1659 My First Teaching Non-Anxiety Dream I don’t know how many academics and former academics have teaching anxiety dreams, but mine followed me even after stepping down from active faculty status.  You can take the girl … Continue reading

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