Related Blog Posts on Arts and Culture, books, Engaging Families with Young Children, Family Activities, Parenting, and PJ Library

Holy Sparks: Celebrating 50 Years of Women in the Rabbinate

Jean Bloch Rosensaft
April 28, 2022
On June 3, 1972, Rabbi Sally Priesand was ordained by Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion as the first woman rabbi in North America. To celebrate this milestone in Jewish and American history, HUC's Dr. Bernard Heller Museum in New York partnered with The Braid's Story Archive of Women Rabbis in Los Angeles to create the exhibition "Holy Sparks," presenting 24 ground-breaking women rabbis who were "firsts" in their time.

Film Review: Babi Yar. Context Examines Ukraine’s Past as It Fights for Its Future

Wes Hopper
March 30, 2022
In Sergie Loznitsa’s new documentary film, Babi Yar. Context, the decade spanning the Nazi invasion of Ukraine through the ensuing war crimes trial is explored using only archival footage and the occasional title card. Babi Yar (Babyn Yar) is a ravine outside the Ukrainian capital of Kyiv where on September 29-30, 1941, the Nazi Regime massacred an estimated 33,771 Jewish people. The result is a stark, uncompromising exploration of war and genocide that enlists the viewer in bearing witness to one of history’s most notorious atrocities. 

When the Queen Says No

Rabbi Leah R. Berkowitz
March 4, 2022
I had been wanting to write about Queen Vashti for a while. A big part of my rabbinate and my writing focuses on uplifting the stories of women in the biblical narrative, especially those who do not get enough attention.

Prayer for the French Republic

Wes Hopper
February 28, 2022
On the face of things, Prayer for the French Republic, a new play by Joshua Harmon, is about several generations of a French-Jewish family living in Paris and contemplating whether they're still safe in the country they call home. In actuality, it is a discomfiting examination of the state of the Jewish diaspora.

The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel Returns Sharper and Funnier Than Ever

Wes Hopper
February 16, 2022
The first episode of the new season of The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel starts out with a single word, "Revenge!" As the show slowly makes clear, this isn't just revenge against Shy Baldwin, the singer and entertainer who left Midge (Rachel Brosnahan) stranded on the tarmac as he took flight to Europe without her.