Edition 36
February 2001   Shevat 5761 Vol. 4 Edition 2
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TOPIC OF THE MONTH      Miracles
This month: SHEVAT


     Samuel Bak

     Voice of the Turtle

     Synagogues without Jews

     Ethical lesson

     Samuel ha-Nagid





—Winter 2000—

One of the most remarkable and interesting personalities of the Spanish Middle Ages, the Jewish scholar and poet Samuel ha-Nagid (993-1055) is known as the father of medieval Jewish secular poetry. Brilliant, talented and devoted to his people and religion, Samuel was also a politically shrewd and at times vainglorious statesman who loved battle and waged it with great success on behalf of the Muslim rulers that he served.

—Fall 2000—

Best known for his play The Dybbuk, the famous Yiddish writer and dramatist S. Ansky (Solomon Zainwil Rapoport; 1863-1920) wore many other hats; he was a poet, socialist activist, emergency aid worker, and ethnographer. Through the combination of these many and varied capacities he earned his reputation as a great builder of modern Jewish culture.


Winter 1999

Businesswoman and philanthropist Dona Gracia Mendes, born into a wealthy family that escaped the Inquisition in Portugal in the late 15th century, crossed Europe and settled in Constantinope. Throughout her life, she was known for her generosity and her devotion to Judaism and her fellow Jews....


—Summer 2000—

The poet, writer, and artist Else Lasker-Schüler was an influential member of the Berlin artistic community that emerged in the first years of the 20th century. Sometimes referred to as the "Berlin Moderns" because of their important contribution to the new modernist style, members of this community many of them Jews included some of the greatest, most innovative writers, poets, artists, critics and editors of the 20th century.

— Spring 2000—

Nahman of Bratslav (1772-1810) lived during the height of the Hasidic movement in Eastern Europe. At the peak of his short life he was the zaddik of the town of Bratslav. He is perhaps most widely known for his Tales. Deceptively simple parables and stories containing many elements of European folklore and fairytale, the Tales are read both as literary masterpieces and as profound meditations on the relationship between God and man....







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