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Jewish Contraptions

National Poetry Month: A poetical Bay Area exhibit brings together California Jewish artists who make wonky machines, ‘anxious objects,’ and other kinetic commentaries on the ‘labor-saving devices’ of our current entanglement

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Gangsters for Zion

Yom Ha’atzmaut: How Jewish mobsters helped Israel gain its independence

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Indonesians Hate the Chinese, Because They Are Jewish

How Dutch colonial officials used anti-Semitism to fuel anti-Chinese hate

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My Jewish Encounter With Hinduism

How I came to an intellectual and spiritual connection with Swami Chidananda Saraswati

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Shaq Hears America Singing

National Poetry Month: ‘Poetry in America,’ an ‘infectious’ new series from PBS, shows how verse isn’t merely the art of words

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Angels in America

Tony Kushner’s masterpiece of 1980s cruelty returns to Broadway just as the next wave of illiberalism washes over Trump’s new order

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Third Seders and Ghetto Nights

Rokhl’s Golden City: Secular Seders, camp epiphanies, and Yom HaShoah

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Hitler’s Hollywood

A new German documentary makes an ‘audacious act of archival retrieval’ to bring to light the cinematic propaganda that fueled the rise of the Third Reich

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A Revelatory History of a Single Block on the Upper West Side

Bookworm: Gangsters, kidnappers, a pencil-maker, a Shakespearean actor, a toothpaste magnate, and other 20th-century ghosts in Daniel Wakin’s surprising new account of a section of Riverside Drive

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Brother, Can You Spare a Dime?

How a Russian Jewish lullaby turned into the anthem of the forgotten men and women of our country

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Walk With Me, Unorthodox

Ep. 131: Actor Joshua Malina and composer Hrishikesh Hirway, hosts of The West Wing Weekly podcast

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The Making of Kubrick’s Masterpiece, ‘2001: A Space Odyssey’

Fifty years after the release of the film that changed the world, two new books look back at its transcendent genius creator

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Romain Gary’s ‘The Kites’ Is the Best ‘Masterpiece Theater’ TV Series You’ll Ever Read

Bookworm: A new first translation of the French writer’s wartime epic

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Elijah

Tablet Original Fiction: A tale of sin and redemption

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Egg-Gazing for Pesakh

Rokhl’s Golden City: yolks with blood spots, jokes with Hebrew subtitles, and ‘The Labor of Life’

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Arthur Koestler’s Stunning Portrait of the Criminal Inside Us All

Bookworm: 35 years after the author’s death this month, his timeless classic ‘Darkness at Noon’ still reverberates from inside its tiny prison cell

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Anatomy of a Pogrom

How the anti-Jewish riot in Kishinev, then the capital of the Bessarabia Governorate in the Russian Empire, unfolded on April 19 and 20, 1903—an excerpt from a new history

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Laughter in the Face of Oncoming Death

Yiddish writer Itzik Manger’s ‘relentlessly delightful’ biblical fantasia ‘The Book of Paradise’ refuses to be taken to the bitter edge

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Jews in Space

Rokhl’s Golden City: ‘Canada First’ ideology in non-sappy immigrant-tale theater, an invisible feminist in Toronto, an Easter Egg revealed in ‘Futurama,’ and other dispatches from the orbiting Yiddish cosmos

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A Slap in the Face

Beate and Serge Klarsfeld’s moving memoirs trace the evolution of a new idea: that Germans were responsible for the Nazi past. Can today’s Europe learn from their moral courage?

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A New Entebbe Movie, Hijacked by Bad Ideas

Neither psychologically astute nor fun, ‘7 Days in Entebbe’ fails to take off

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My Favorite Anti-Semite: H.P. Lovecraft

The 20th-century master of horror admired Hitler but married a Jew and hated ‘alien’ cultures but created some of the most memorable ones in literature

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Technician of the Sacred

A half-century after his groundbreaking ‘ethnopoetic’ anthology, Jerome Rothenberg’s shamanic journey into the sacred poetry of the past continues to lead him to the unknowns of poetry’s future

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The Time Regulation Institute

Bookworm: Ahmet Hamdi Tanpınar wrote what could have been edited into one of the great novels of the 20th century

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The Making (and Remaking) of a Jewish Jazz Masterpiece

Fifty years ago this month, a Jewish youth group issued a remarkable ‘concert service in jazz’ album featuring Herbie Hancock and other greats titled ‘Hear, O Israel’—but the composer hated it

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German Art Without Jews

A pair of exhibits, one at Harvard Art Museums, the other at New York’s Neue Galerie, try to read the signs of a coming conflagration and its attendant guilt in works made under the rise and fall of National Socialism

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‘The Death of Stalin’ by Way of Monty Python

Armando Ianucci’s ‘perversely enjoyable’ scary joke film plays fast and loose with the political scramble after the fall of The Red Tsar

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Israeli Dance Master Roy Assaf’s ‘Girls & Boys’

His new show in Tel Aviv opening this week brings delicacy to the raw athletic style that dominates contemporary choreography

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Winner’s Circle

Ep. 126: Film critic Jordan Hoffman on the Academy Awards, and CNN analyst Asha Rangappa on how being an FBI agent isn’t what it looks like on TV

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The Blot Against America

British political journalist and spy-thriller writer Jonathan Freedland imagined a president in need of removal from office before Trump was elected

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