Volume 4, Number 1, May 2008

The Journal of The Academy for Jewish Religion


Our new title ‘ G’vanim (Variety) ‘ says it all. Our articles in this issue cover the waterfront ‘ from scholarly to popular. David Greenstein gives a new insight into the High Holy Day prayer of asking God to inscribe us in the Book of Life; Jill Hammer presents an unusual perspective on the biblical image of the queen mother/matriarch theme; Peg Kershenbaum adds to our understanding of the origin of the Septuagint; Leonard Kravitz redefines the difference between the meaning of what it is to be a citizen and a religionist; Aaron Leibman critcizes Bernard Zlotowitz’s interpretation of a statement by the Rama; Harry Ezratty tells of how the Spanish dictator Francisco Franco saved Jews; and Norman Patz maintains that the word halakhah means more than law.

And something new for our Journal: my poem on the Sabbath and Ruby Namdar’s original Hebrew story translated into English by David Greenstein.

We are blessed with several good book reviews by Paul Kushner, Diane M. Sharon, and Michael Rothbaum.

About Our Name
G’vanim is the Hebrew word meaning ‘colors, hues,’ conveying a sense of great variety. Ours is a world that is complex, richly varied and pluralistic. We cannot allow ourselves to see the world in black and white categories that flatten our colorful, multi-hued reality. This journal is dedicated to promoting a vision that is sensitive to the many g’vanim of our world.

Bernard M. Zlotowitz

Editorial Board


Our Lives as Texts: Scripture and Erasure
David Greenstein
Read article (PDF)

Queen Mothers and Matriarchs: How the Role of the Gevirah Helps Us Understand Mothers in Genesis
Jill Hammer
Read article (PDF)

Origins, Legends and Rabbinic Attitudes Concerning the Septuagint
Peg Kershenbaum
Read article (PDF)

Citizen and/or Religionist
Leonard S. Kravitz
Read article (PDF)

The Absence of Patrilineal Descent in Medieval Halakhic Sources
Aaron Liebman
Read article (PDF)

Francisco Franco Saves Jews
Harry Ezratty
Read article (PDF)

Speculative Explanations for Two Terms in Rabbinic Literature
Norman Patz
Read article (PDF)

P O E T R Y:

The Beauty of the Sabbath
Bernard M. Zlotowitz
Read poem (PDF)


Mr. Levi and His Afternoon Shabbat Coffee
Reuben Namdar,translated by David Greenstein
Read story (PDF)


Rochelle Saidel, ed.: Fiorello’s Sister: Gemma LaGuardia Gluck’s Story, Reviewed by Paul Kushner

Alan T. Levenson: An Introduction to Modern Jewish Thinkers, Reviewed by Paul Kushner

Lesley Hazelton: Jezebel, the Untold Story of the Bible’s Harlot Queen
Richard E. Rubenstein: Thus Saith the Lord: The Revolutionary Moral Vision of Isaiah and Jeremiah, Reviewed by Diane M. Sharon

Esther Schor: Emma Lazarus (Jewish Encounters), Reviewed by Michael Rothbaum

Read book reviews (PDF)