Judaism


Valmadonna Collection Purchased by the National Library of Israel 2

This is very good news! It appears the entire collection has been purchased by the Israeli National Library. As I shared several years ago Sotheby’s was exhibiting and the family seeking to sell this incredibly important collection. It is particularly important for Targum scholars because it includes Valmadonna 1 (formerly Sassoon 282). The Sotheby’s catalogue described […]


BenSira.org is Live 3

I received an email recently from my undergraduate advisor and outstanding biblical scholar Gary Rendsburg announcing a new project:  BenSira.org. This has been developed with one of his Rutger’s undergraduate honors students (of course!), Jacob Binstein. It looks to be an incredible resource. Please spread the word! Welcome to www.bensira.org, the website devoted to the […]


“Spinning Spinoza” When is a Jew not a Jew?

I have never read as much Spinoza as I feel I should have (and I thought about that again while in Amsterdam). I had a colleague at a previous institution who was a HUGE Spinoza fan. He was also very reformed and, as this piece points out, would portray Spinoza as the Patriarch of the […]


Conference: “New Perspectives on Jews and Judaism” 1

Given my recent research on the Book of Ruth, rabbinic interpretation thereof, and rabbinic conversion I am very disappointed that I will likely be traveling on the West Coast during this conference. If, however, you are in the Philly area and have such interests you should not miss this. Taking Turns: New Perspectives on Jews […]


A stumbling block…

When I was being shown around Freiburg last week my guide actually stumbled and then stopped and pointed to be the “Stolperstein” upon which she had halted. This term literally translates as a “stumbling stone” and is a small concrete cube covered in brass that is etched with the name of a single Jew or […]


Candlelight by The Maccabeats 3

This history may not be spot on but the beat goes on! Chanukah Sameach!  


Facebook Haggadah

A bit late, but this is too brilliant not to share! The facebook haggadah.  


The Economist on “The Art Scroll Talmud”

The Economist has a short article on a new edition of the Talmud. I haven’t spent much time with this so I am not sure how it is revolutionizing Talmud study… For Orthodox Jews, lifelong study of the Talmud is the supreme religious precept. But for many earnest students through the ages, it has been […]


New Biography of Maimonides

The New York Sun has a review of Joel Kramer’s Maimonides. Oddly the review is mostly a summary of Maimonides’ life with only the last two paragraphs offering any sort of critique of the book. This is more than just a biography of one of history’s greatest thinkers. It is also a rich cultural, religious, […]