Day of Rest

Judith Shulevitz’s new book considers the Sabbath throughout the ages and in her own life

By Vox Tablet|March 15, 2010 7:00 AM

Judith Shulevitz grew up in a house divided; mom observed Shabbat, and dad did not. She’s not the only one. What for some is a meaningful respite from the daily grind is, for others, an antiquated and oppressive ordeal. Indeed, the Sabbath has always raised questions and posed challenges for those who observe it, Jews and Christians alike. In her new book, The Sabbath World: Glimpses of a Different Order of Time, Shulevitz [1], a journalist and cultural critic who has been a columnist for the New York Times [2] and Slate [3] and is a contributing editor to Tablet Magazine, explores how the Sabbath has been understood over the course of millennia and how Sabbath observance affects social and familial relations, ethics, civic life, and individual well-being. Vox Tablet spoke with Shulevitz at her home in Manhattan about how the Sabbath has influenced her, her children, Jesus and his disciples, and Supreme Court justices, among others.

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