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My Machberet

“Machberet” is the Hebrew word for notebook. Since it’s also (appropriately) one of the very first words I learned in my first Hebrew school in Brooklyn (and, I confess, one of the few conversational Hebrew words I still remember), I’ve chosen it to title this blog, where I offer write-ups on Jewish news (especially of the literary sort) and occasional commentary.

Pre-Shabbat Jewish Literary Links

Photo Credit: Reut Miryam Cohen

Photo Credit: Reut Miryam Cohen

Every Friday My Machberet presents an array of Jewish-interest links, primarily of the literary variety.

  • On the “contributions to Israeli literature of writers writing in languages other than Hebrew.”
  • It’s time for the Jewish Book Carnival (hosted for August by Yael Shahar).
  • A review of Sons and Soldiers: The Untold Story of the Jews Who Escaped the Nazis and Returned with the U.S. Army to Fight Hitler.
  • Job alert (New York): Hadassah is looking for a Social Media Specialist.
  • There’s obviously been a lot of writing about what happened in Charlottesville last weekend—and its aftermath. Rather than post some of the items that have resonated most with me, I invite you to share some of the readings that you have found most powerful.
  • Shabbat shalom.

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    Words of the Week

    “The lesson I learned in Charlottesville was simple: when the racist- neo-Nazi- ‘alt-right’ gathers in your backyard, it is up to us to SHOW UP and make it known that they are not welcome. There is no room here to be passive. If we do not speak out and speak up now, the consequences can be even more devastating than what has already taken place.

    Hineni– I am present. You should be too.”

    Source: Shoshanna R. Schechter-Shaffin, “Charlottesville 2017: When the Nazis Come to Your Backyard – It is time to SHOW UP” (eJewish Philanthropy)

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    Pre-Shabbat Jewish Literary Links

    Photo Credit: Reut Miryam Cohen

    Photo Credit: Reut Miryam Cohen

    Every Friday My Machberet presents an array of Jewish-interest links, primarily of the literary variety.

  • Lovely profile by Sandee Brawarsky of novelist Rachel Kadish and The Weight of Ink, Kadish’s latest book. (I’ve got a copy of this one waiting for me, along with Jennifer S. Brown’s Modern Girls, after attending a Scribblers on the Roof reading by Kadish and Brown this past Sunday evening.) See also Judy Bolton-Fasman’s take for JewishBoston.com.
  • Earlier this week, Moment magazine posted a remarkable poem by Julia Knobloch: “Ninth of Av.”
  • Job alert: San Francisco’s Jewish Community Library is looking for a Program Coordinator.
  • Good news! There’s now a Goodreads giveaway for Rabbi Shai Held’s The Heart of Torah: Essays on the Weekly Torah Portion (volume 1). Wouldn’t you love to have this on your shelf in 5778?
  • And in case you missed it: This week brought the publication of an article (by yours truly!) taking note of the 20th anniversary of the 1997 publication of Anita Diamant’s The Red Tent. (And citing some subsequent works of fiction that have followed in its path.)
  • Shabbat shalom, everyone. And a quick note: My Machberet will be “on hiatus” for a bit while I go attend a conference. Thanks for your patience. I’ll be back soon!

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    Words of the Week

    “Around our table sat Americans and Israelis; Ashkenazim and Mizrachim; secular, Orthodox, and just plain traditional Jews. We were all family. And so, despite its unconventional nature, I felt that our little reunion was a fitting way to spend Shabbat Tisha B’Av. In fact, it seemed like a glimpse of the World to Come, a time when all Jews unite as one people, with one heart.”

    Source: Rebecca Klempner, “A Tisha B’Av Of Joy?” (Jew in the City)

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    Pre-Shabbat Jewish Literary Links

    Photo Credit: Reut Miryam Cohen

    Photo Credit: Reut Miryam Cohen

    Every Friday My Machberet presents an array of Jewish-interest links, primarily of the literary variety.

  • I’ve never forgotten the heroism of Special Police Officer Stephen Tyrone Johns—which made Tamara Miller’s “The Rabbi in the ER” especially moving reading for me.
  • After preparing myself with this Tablet piece by Marco Roth, I’m currently reading Joshua Cohen’s Moving Kings.
  • Hard to believe: “Soon there will only be one Judaica store left in Manhattan.” (via Ben Sales for JTA)
  • On a cheerier note: “Streetwise Hebrew” is a new addition to my podcast subscriptions. (I need to focus more when listening to them, though! It’s one thing to listen while I’m walking around the city; it’s another to sit and listen and look at/study each show’s notes!)
  • And ICYMI on the Practicing Writing blog: Here’s some news about a new #JewLit-related book-publicity project of mine.
  • Shabbat shalom.

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    Words of the Week

    “Furthermore, anyone who is a true student of the Middle East, including Jews (of which I count myself as one) who deeply empathize with the Palestinian narrative and yearn for a way for these two peoples to find the path to a compromise that honors multiple narratives and needs, knows that it is a gross simplification and distortion of both history and current affairs to present that situation as one in which the Palestinian people are the victims of the Israelis are aggressors. The reality is far more complex and involves international players who have manipulated the situation and not only the Israelis and the Palestinians.”

    Source: Rabbi Rachel Gurevitz, “Intersectionality and the Limits of Ideology” (Rabbis Without Borders)

    (Yes, I realize that an edit is needed. But I think you get the gist of what she’s saying.)

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