Jewish Identity Category

Today is Tisha B’av, the ninth of the Jewish month of Av, a day when Jews traditionally remember the destruction of the Temples and other tragedies of our history by fasting and reading from the Book of Lamentations, culminating a three week period of remembering and mourning. As I fast, I am remembering the destruction that so many teachers, advertisements, politicians, a lobby group, and synagogues have tried to instruct me to ‘forget’ or not know: the destruction of Palestine. This destruction continues today, as we see the actions of modern day Israel in repressing freedom of speech, movement, and quality of life.

Sarah Lyhall of the New York Times reports that Britain’s Supreme Court ruled against a Jewish high school in London that had rejected an applicant because his mother wasn’t Jewish enough – and so, by extension, neither was he. Yep, she had chosen Judaism years ago and gone through a conversion process, but By all […]

The following drash/sermon was given during Yom Kippur at Congregation Sha’ar Zahav. I love being Jewish. I always have. From the moment I knew I was Jewish, I found a home in the prayers, larger-than-me concepts, values and sense of community that were infused in everything we did. I was aware, however, that I was […]

Adam Serwer over at The Root has a great new post called “The Self-Hate Hustle.” Serwer draws a parallel between divisions in Jewish communities over Israel and divisions in (U.S.) Black communities “about loyalty and authenticity.” Describing Netanyahu’s characterization of David Axelrod and Rahm Emanuel as “self-hating Jews” based on their support of a settlement […]

Check out Michelle Goldberg’s new web-only piece, “Same As It Ever Was?” up at The American Prospect. Her tagline, or more likely her editor’s tagline, for the article wonders if the “pro-Israel lobby, long seen as an immutable part of American politics, may be headed toward obsolescence.” I’m not sure if I buy that, since […]

Below is an excerpt from a piece I published earlier today on Mondoweiss. I am a Jew. I am a religious Jew. I am an anti-Zionist Jew. I realize that to make this last claim is to risk that you will stop reading, as often any claim of anti-Zionism brings with it a label of […]

Quick hit: Fatemeh Fakhraie over at Racialicious does a great job analyzing W magazine‘s big article on Persian Jews in Los Angeles. The first commenter sums it up well: On one hand, it’s nice to see some acknowledgment that non-Ashkenazi Jews and Jews of color exist. On the other, a representation that just plays on […]

this is basically a note to send you to a piece i’ve written for the latest issue of the Monthly Review on the origins of the current rise to visibility of jewish opposition to zionism. i hope you’ll read and enjoy – and if you disagree with me, argue here. the piece is online, at […]

Originally published in jweekly.com Until this year, I had never counted the Omer — the ritual of marking each of the 49 days between Passover and Shavuot with a nightly blessing. But when Passover came to an end this year, I felt I could use more of that “liberation” our tradition speaks of. Armed with […]

I am a trained ethnomusicologist, and began to go to Belmonte to investigate the role of music in their lives. I continue to go, partly because I rarely consider any project “finished”, and also because there are many people I have come to love dearly, especially the family I always stay with when there. I […]


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