What Happens When You Mix Yeshiva Guys With Oxford?

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12 Responses

  1. tzippi says:

    I am intrigued and looking forward to future articles. (And I hope a proportionate amount of coverage from next week’s session.) I’m not surprised that Rav Hirsch should be a source for the Torah view of how society should function; read his commentary to Pirkei Avos 5:13, written against the backdrop of the development of communism.

    (There is Irish stew and there is Irish stew. I will confess to having a different reaction to the thought than I’m sure Professor Scruton intended. Y’all can raise your hands if you know what I mean. Es chatai ani mazkir.)

    • Anthony Knopf says:

      Roger Scruton taught at Cambridge in the 1960s and was the supervisor of the future Rabbi Jonathan Sacks!

  2. Bob Miller says:

    Considering how avidly today’s decadent society has tried to force its ideas and practices on traditional-minded Jews and non-Jews, it’s important that the two groups cooperate as far as possible in rescuing civilization.

  3. Second to last guy down the table to your left says:

    There’s one thing missing from this excellent description of the program, and that is what Rabbi Adlerstein brought to the table as one of the program’s directors. He was always available to discuss the material being taught (and also what wasn’t being taught) whether it was during breakfast (possibly earlier- I was still asleep while he was learning his Daf) or late at night upstairs over a cold one. His contribution must be recognized as well.

  4. joel rich says:

    I suggest you might want to familiarize your charges with EdX and Coursera if they have internet access. They can get the basics of philosophy, psychology, brain science, social sciences from some top instructors. I can testify that it greatly enhances your ability to learn and understand torah and communicate it. I’m happy to refer to specific courses or they can look back at audioroundup on torahmusings for class summaries.
    The eternal nation does not fear the long road

    “עם הנצח לא מפחד מדרך ארוכה”

    • Bob Miller says:

      See also MIT OpenCourseWare (OCW) online. You can browse the various departments and courses to find subjects of interest.

      “The idea is simple: to publish all of our course materials online and make them widely available to everyone.”
      Dick K.P. Yue, Professor, MIT School of Engineering

  5. Benzion N. Chinn says:

    I like Roger Scruton. His writings on Kant were a big help for me when I was in college.

  6. Yehoshua D. says:

    I am curious why all of the non-frum lecturers who were invited to present seem to be conservative. In terms of care for the downtrodden and less fortunate, I am sure that there are many from the liberal side who have much to offer. How about a discussion of the U.S. criminal justice system from one of the holy people who works for the Innocence Project?

    [YA – Not only do they seem to be conservative, they are conservative. Tikvah’s mission statement includes the perpetuation of conservative thinking and values. It’s their dime.]

    • Yehoshua D. says:

      That is not what it says on their website:
      Our animating mission and guiding spirit is to advance Jewish excellence and Jewish flourishing in the modern age. Tikvah is politically Zionist, economically free-market oriented, culturally traditional, and theologically open-minded. Yet in all issues and subjects, we welcome vigorous debate and big arguments. Our institutes, programs, and publications all reflect this spirit of bringing forward the serious alternatives for what the Jewish future should look like, and bringing Jewish thinking and leaders into conversation with Western political, moral, and economic thought.

    • mycroft says:

      I believe that cross-currents would be even better if it didn’t digress to advocating political positions. One can be a frum Jew who IMO follows the essential hashkafa advocated by most writers on this blog if ones political beliefs are liberal or conservative. IMO Judaism has elements of what are found in both the liberal and conservative streams of thought.
      Yahadus is what should be advocated not one or the other political party/ideology.

    • DF says:

      The Innocence Project is not quite as innocent as you think it is. There is growing criticism of their methods, see the article in the Georgetown Law Journal called “In Praise of the Guilty Project.” Moreover, the overwhelming bulk of their work is devoted to African Americans, so much so that much of their website focuses on race, and they proudly refer to themselves as “the civil rights movement of the 21st century.” The plight of plain old white men wrongly imprisoned is just not that important to them.

      Genuine prison reform, i.e., without the racial demagoguery, is not a liberal or conservative notion, its a human one. Indeed, prison reform has been quietly taking place all across the country with states under Republican governors. The federal government is now the problem, as the size of the government has grown, and the army of prosecutors has grow bigger and more arrogant. Prison sentences are growing longer and more draconian, for the most minor of regulatory infractions. There are indeed voices calling for change, but not enough, and certainly not enough Jewish ones. I have no doubt whatsoever that the Tikvah foundation would be happy to take a role in this vital arena.

  7. Mendel says:

    As someone who went to both yeshiva and Oxford, I like the idea. But it would be nice to be accurate. Roger Scruton was educated at Cambridge and taught at Birkbeck College, London. I am not aware that he has any connection with Oxford and he is certainly not an “Oxford don”. But what’s the difference between Brisk and Telz anyway?

    [YA – 1) He taught esthetics – his specialty – at Oxford in 2010. He attended Cambridge. Not sure if he ever taught there. 2) Don’t ask that question of a Brisker.]

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