Not Your Bubbe’s HUC

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10 Responses

  1. Bob Miller says:

    The only thing new about this is that they’re more comfortable in making their inner feelings public. They always latch onto the liberalism of the day. Today’s is far more radical than yesterday’s.

  2. tzippi says:

    The Guardian link refers to an “as-yet-unnamed book of essays that will be published to mark the 50th anniversary of 1967’s six-day war, when Israel first entered the Palestinian territories: the West Bank, including East Jerusalem, and the Gaza Strip,” to be edited by Chabon and his wife, author Ayelet Waldman.

    The book is called Kingdom of Olives and Ash, for those who would like to avoid it.

    I have an overwhelming compulsion to start a campaign urging people to send them multiple copies of The 28th of Iyar.

    • Yaakov Menken says:

      That book has been published, and is the one referenced in our article, as it was inspired by his collaboration with Breaking the Silence.

  3. Nachum says:

    Note that the dinner was 1883, not 1893. And while we know that a number of the attendees were offended, it’s not certain that anyone actually walked out.

    It’s also interesting to note that the lone voice of protest was from an Israeli.

    Of course, every time Reform or Conservatism does something like this, it dooms any chance they might have of being recognized in Israel. (They’re already pretty much doomed in the US, and that they did all on their own.) So maybe we should tell them to keep being this honest in public.

    • Yaakov Menken says:

      Thank you for the correction! That was a typo or brain freeze on my part, as I know well that JTS was (not coincidentally) founded in 1886, and have written about this previously with the correct date.

      However, contemporary accounts do indicate that “two rabbis rose from their seats and rushed from the room,” while others sat and refused to touch their plates.

      As for your last paragraph… you have a point there.

  4. David F says:

    At this point, there’s really no difference. This is just the natural progression from where they began. At some point they’ll likely cease referring to themselves as Jewish.

  5. Steve Brizel says:

    One could alternately maintain that Chabon’s speech is yet another example of what happens when one engages in throwing out the baby with the bathwater type of logic.

  6. Nachum says:

    Hmm. There are studies that claim that the main account of the dinner comes from someone who was recollecting it about sixty years later, and we all know that eyewitness accounts aren’t always reliable. In any event, one article claimed no one left. Who knows. It’s certainly likely some did. I believe Rabbi Benjamin Szold of Baltimore, father of Henrietta, was there with his daughter, and she writes that they were very offended but stayed. Later he became a Conservative leader, and she became…Henrietta Szold. 🙂

    At YU we were taught JTS was founded in 1887, maybe to put them a year after YU. 🙂 I suppose the way institutions are, you can apply various dates to them. YU itself uses 1886, 1896, 1897, and others, all accurate. Ironically, at the time their own seal read “5706”, which is decades later. 🙂 The RIETS seal even said 5730. That’s elevating technical legal details to much more than they mean, though, and a few years ago they got rid of all the dates.

  7. Uriel Levi says:

    I actually read one of his novels , “The Yiddish Policemen’s Union” and enjoyed it. Nonetheless, it was particularly offensive to the “black hatters” or Chareidi Judaism. It is not coincidence that his predecessor of the Jewish intellectual left, Phillip Roth died about the same time & and buried in a non Jewish cemetery renouncing his Judaism right before he died. Chabon personifies the self destruction of the secular Jewish left. May Hashem have Rachamim on their souls, as I hope they are considered Tinok Sh’Nishbah rather than Malshinim with no hope.

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