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Oct 14, 2021, 8:10 PM
The Terrifying Part of the Story of Noah
Dozens of children’s books retell the story of Noah; we give children toy versions of Noah’s ark. We scarcely notice that the story of Noah has terrifying aspects. Notice the most terrifying one: Though Noah works heroically to save...
Aug 18, 2021, 8:51 PM
Mercy as the Opposite of Justice?
I dedicate this post to the memory of my late friend, David Dolinko. We were schoolmates from second or third grade through high school graduation. He went on to earn a Ph.D. in Philosophy, and then a law degree,...
Jun 5, 2021, 12:28 AM
Cheap Grace: A Progressive Doctrine of Vicarious Atonement
Living as a White person in the United States of America means repressing a heavy load of guilt and shame. The country grew out of rebellious colonies of the King of England. The founders, subjects of the King, rebelled...
Feb 14, 2021, 7:07 PM
Idolatry and Politics
Cynthia Ozick famously defines idolatry as setting up anything as the ultimate value, more precious than life itself. Once we come to love any physical object, or any concept, or any abstract idea, anything, as more precious than life,...
Dec 2, 2020, 2:51 AM
A Pathbreaking Novel
The single life in Daniel Ross Goodman’s new novel belongs to Eli Newman, a rising Talmud scholar with an interest in world literature, a star student at a Baltimore Kollel (a kind of graduate seminar for Talmud students). Much...
Sep 26, 2020, 9:43 AM
A Rising Tide Lifts All Yachts
Suppose, as the chief executive of a corporation, you realize that your company’s income is destined to rise. As a result of increased efficiency in production, lower costs for materials, improvements in products and services, and increased demand, you...
Jul 8, 2020, 11:29 PM
Child-raising in the Plague Year
When do we get back to normal? It seemed inevitable. It seemed like no force on earth could change the pattern. Children in two-parent families would spend their days in commercial nurseries, like children of single-parent families, while all adults...
Jun 1, 2020, 7:58 AM
Culture Clash: Corruption in Israel and in the USA
In a unanimous decision, the United States Supreme Court recently threw out the conviction of two New Jersey political operatives, Bridget Anne Kelly and Bill Baroni (Kelly vs. The United States). For three days in September 2013, the two...
May 21, 2020, 8:10 AM
Heath Care and Intermediate-Level Talmud
The American Health Care System, and Intermediate-Level Talmud Study Anyone who has ever had to deal with health care in the United States of America knows that it is complicated. The simplest questions do not get simple answers. Try asking, and you...
Apr 30, 2020, 6:28 PM
Voting: Political Act, or an Art Form? Why vote? Some of us vote primarily to try to determine what the government will do, and some to express ourselves artistically. If you want to determine what the government will do, you do vote,...
Louis Finkelman teaches Literature and Writing at Lawrence Technological University in Southfield, Michigan. He serves as half of the rabbinic team at Congregation Or Chadash in Oak Park, Michigan.