They Shoot Horses

Steven Spielberg’s film adaptation of War Horse saps the imaginative power of the play in favor of sentimentality

Rationale

The question policy-makers should focus on isn’t whether Iran would use a nuclear weapon, but how a bomb would embolden an already reckless regime

Perpetual Movement

Clancy Sigal’s 1961 novel, Going Away, is a primer for the Occupy generation about the futility of despair and the inevitability of change

Earthly Gardens

In The Garden of the Finzi-Continis, Giorgio Bassani’s 1962 novel, an aristocratic Jewish family in Italy tries to wall itself off from the Holocaust

Minority Interest

Lebanon’s Maronites, threatened by Sunni power, will be the bellwether of the Mideast’s Christians. Could they face the same fate as the region’s Jews?

The Avengers

Michael Kohlhaas, a 19th-century novella by Heinrich von Kleist, reminds the Israeli and U.S. right that lust for vengeance is a terrible idea

Ground Up

Diagnosed with cancer, my father decided to have his tongue removed. It’s an extreme treatment, but he’s always known how to make things work out.

Bake Off

From chocolate cake to onion rolls, recent Jewish cookbooks offer a tantalizing range of recipes for Hanukkah treats to complement the latkes

Children’s Books 2011

Need Hanukkah gift ideas? From a tale of a Shabbat princess to a Lower East Side detective story, here are the year’s best Jewish kids’ books

Hearts and Minds

A pair of new plays—one powerful, about Afghanistan; the other less successful, about Eichmann—bring recent history to the stage

Listless

Steven Spielberg’s Schindler’s List is both a moral and an aesthetic disaster, an embodiment of much that is wrong with American-Jewish life

Russian Spring

Vladimir Jurowski, directing the London Philharmonic at Carnegie Hall this week, was loose with Brahms but well-suited to Mozart’s “Turkish” concerto

Field Notes

Five Books: A biography of sportscaster Howard Cosell, the life of film critic Pauline Kael, the poets who translated Shakespeare into Hebrew, and more

Jewish Star

Despite his notorious pro-Hitler comments at Cannes, Lars von Trier is more of a Jew than he knows and Melancholia a more Jewish movie than he realizes

Poem Love

In a recent performance of Schubert’s and Schumann’s settings of Heinrich Heine’s poetry, tenor Ian Bostridge and pianist Thomas Adès excelled

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