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Hello Darkness, My Old Friend

It has never been easy, even with all the accolades, to be Paul Simon. A new album, ‘Stranger to Stranger,’ shows the popular bridge-builder is still crazy after 74 years.

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Woody Allen’s Biographer Tells All

Id meet ego. Ego, id. The celebrated, controversial, highly self-aware filmmaker’s new ‘Café Society’ is about himself—but who is that?

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A Holy Fool

Tablet Original Fiction: A Jewish heretic wants to read—literature

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A Memoir of Jewish Camp From Somebody Who Never Attended

‘I thought I knew something about what being Jewish means. Then my wife and I started looking into summer camps for our son.’

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Help, I’m a Prisoner in a Brain Lab

Alan Mittleman’s new study of Jewish philosophy ‘boils Bible stories and brain science into the message that there’s something holy in everything and everyone’—but can reason and faith coexist?

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Do We Really Want To Be Members of a Tribe?

Sebastian Junger’s fascinatingly wrong-headed ‘Tribe: on Homecoming and Belonging’

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Rock ’N’ Roll All Night

This week on Unorthodox, Miss Hitler 2016, plus writer and ‘domestic first responder’ Christopher Noxon and rock critic Jim Derogatis

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‘To the End of the Land’ Is Israel’s Hottest Ticket

A new Habima theater adaptation of David Grossman’s award-winning but deeply pessimistic novel puts the Jewish State on a treadmill to outrun history

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Can Islam Be More Jewish?

In his new book ‘What Is Islam?,’ the late scholar Shahab Ahmed asks if it’s time to return to an idea of the religion that prizes more than just the Quran

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Thick-Sprinkled Bunting: Our Flag and Its Poet

What Walt Whitman can tell us about our democracy

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Leopold Weiss, the Jew Who Helped Invent the Modern Islamic State

‘Europe’s gift to Islam’ was born in Austria-Hungary 116 years ago this week. His ideas on the intersection of politics and religion are more relevant than ever.

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Hello, Gorgeous

This week on Unorthodox, humorist Mo Rocca discusses his love of Barbra Streisand, and Rebecca Schiff reads from her debut short-story collection

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How an American Jewish Opera Star Accidentally Launched the Soviet Jewish Movement

The 60th anniversary of Jan Peerce’s landmark Cold War Moscow show, where a final encore pointed the way to deliverance

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Hot Dogs, the Jewish American Fast Food

The rollercoaster history of the wiener in a bun, in new books on the Coney Island institution, Nathan’s Famous

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A Conversation With Mel Brooks

2,000-year-old writer, director, and producer is still blazing saddles at age 90

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Elie Wiesel Visits Disneyland

The late Holocaust survivor’s underappreciated journalistic work for ‘The Forverts,’ unearthed—including a dispatch from The Happiest Place on Earth

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Why Zionism Is Americanism

An excerpt from Jeffrey Rosen’s new biography of the Supreme Court Justice Louis D. Brandeis shows the extraordinary jurist thinking about America and Israel

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So Long, Farewell

After 11 years and 500 episodes, Vox Tablet signs off for good

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Against Abnormalization: BDS Targets a Major Lebanese-Born Writer

An interview with Israeli television lands French citizen, novelist, and essayist Amin Maalouf in a bizarre and ignorant thought-crime hell

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Can Jewish Fairy Tales Have Happy Endings?

Emily Barton’s ‘richly imagined’ new novel ‘The Book of Esther’ projects fantasies of Jewish power onto a Tolkien-like land

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A New Movie About Bob Kaufman, a Jewish African-American Street Poet Shrouded in Myth

‘And When I Die, I Won’t Stay Dead’ does little to dispel the mystery surrounding the artist, which is why it works

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Ramon’s Piano

An Israeli rock musician faces repeated public family tragedy head on, to emerge from the long shadow of his hero father, Israel’s first astronaut

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Michael Tolkin’s American Midrash

The Hollywood screenwriter and underappreciated novelist is ready for the end of the world

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Tom Bird Bears Witness to Two Wars and the Holocaust

A Vietnam veteran wanted to bring to the theater a story about his father, a veteran of World War II. It meant facing the horrors of war with brutal honesty and love.

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Louis Brandeis: The Jewish Boy From Kentucky Who Became a Supreme Court Legend

A new biography examines the ground-breaking cases, comportment, and all-around genius of the country’s first Jewish justice

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12 Top American Comics With Nazis

Nazi Gorillas, ‘Swastika Sharks,’ booby-trapped Hitler-assassinating paintings, and a hot Third Reich vixen

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Can Agnon’s Goat Speak English?

Reading the great Hebrew writer in Toby Press’ translation to English, 50 years after his Nobel prize, brings his layered simplicity to a new and deserving audience

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Rothschild’s Luck; or, A Tale of Two Patrons

Newly translated fiction—a timeless fable about wealth and humility—from the Nobel laureate S.Y. Agnon, in time for Shavuot

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Saul Bellow’s Favorite Chicago Mayor Wasn’t Richard Daley or Rahm Emanuel. It Was Teddy Kollek.

The Nobel prize-winning author called the Jerusalem mayor a ‘phenomenal personality, schemer, finagler, and arranger’ who ‘towers over most of the political figures I have known.’

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