No Bull

This week’s parasha, telling of the strange and inexplicable deaths of Aaron’s sons, is an excellent primer on truth, lies, bunk, and the crucial differences among them

Dip of Nations

Garlicky hummus is Israel’s national dish, one that inspires best-selling books, prompted a headline-making heist, and is said to cure physical and mental ailments

Passion

Elizabeth Taylor died today of congestive heart failure. That seems impossible: Whatever misfortunes befell the glamour queen and Jewish convert over the years, there was never a failure of heart.

Lost in the Fire

On the 100th anniversary of the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory fire, it’s important to remember this important case not as a black-and-white morality tale but as a nuanced and complex story

Crossing Over

Journalists Steve and Cokie Roberts, a non-observing Jew and a Catholic, have hosted Passover Seders together for four decades. They share the rituals from their interfaith observance in a new haggadah.

Poser

When the middle-aged, out-of-shape male body finally begins to rebel, there are only so many reparative options for the devoutly sedentary. In praise of pilates and—of all things—prenatal yoga.

Purim 2011

From hamantashen to designer costumes to newfangled groggers—anything and everything you might need to better enjoy the Festival of Lots

Thumbs Up

This week’s parasha, an exhaustive account of ritualistic slaughter, can teach us a lot about video games, a medium governed entirely by the mechanics of prescribed motions

Be Happy

We’re commanded to be happy on Purim, and it turns out the acts required for proper observance—from donning costumes to celebrating with others—provide useful tricks for brightening moods year round

Seriously Groggy

The Purim tradition of drowning out Haman’s name with noise dates back to medieval times. But in our increasingly cacophonous lives, an illustrator wonders: Does the grogger need to be reinvented?

Boy, Interrupted

Purim calls for costumes, and we’re fine with seeing little girls dressed up as boys. But a boy dressed as a girl makes us uncomfortable, thanks to stubborn ideas about gender roles. It shouldn’t.

Dressed Up

With Purim approaching and a costume in order, seeking sartorial inspiration from the Book of Esther, European paintings, Elizabeth Taylor, and several style gurus, one of whom recommends an edible hat

Man Bites Dog

This week’s parasha—a careful account of the ritualistic sacrifice of animals—has much to teach us about animals, compassion, forgiveness, and Michael Vick

Hebrew School

The Hebrew Language Academy, New York City’s first Hebrew-language charter school, opened two years ago. Now its backers—including financier Michael Steinhardt—want to replicate the model nationwide.

Playing Favorites

The Torah is full of stories of sibling rivalry, from Cain and Abel to Joseph and his brothers. But is the Bible an accurate representation of reality, or overstating the case?

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