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Visions of Wontons: Jews and Chinese Food on Christmas

For those who celebrate, Christmas might conjure up images of sleigh bells, snow, and dancing sugar plum fairies. But for Jews, the holiday is just as likely to prompt mouthwatering visions of wontons, Kung Pao chicken, and other Chinese dishes. Jewish people eating Chinese food on Christmas is an image that has become so pervasive, […]

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Holy Nacht: When Jesus Paid a Visit to Bnei Brak on Christmas Eve

There is a Talmudic Agada about Moses, who traveled forward in time and landed in Rabbi Akiva’s Beth Midrash. He sat in the eighth row and listened to Rabbi Akiva splitting hairs over every verse – or as the story puts it: “(Rabbi Akiva) is destined to derive from each and every thorn of these […]

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Uriel da Costa: the Story of a Nonbeliever

A quote that religious Jews in Israel enjoy hurling in heated arguments with secular Jews is that of the founder of the Hashomer Hatzair Movement and spiritual leader of the kibbutz movement, MK Yaakov Hazan: “We wanted to raise a generation of apikorsim [non-observant Jews], but instead raised a generation of amei haaretz  [unlearned Jews].” This […]

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Yada Yada Yada: 15 Greatest Moments in Jewish Comedy History

In celebration of our blockbuster exhibit, “Let There Be Laughter – Jewish Humor Around the World”, honoring the contributions of Jews to the world of comedy, we at the Museum of the Jewish People at Beit Hatfutsot unveiled a list of the 15 greatest moments in the history of Jewish comedy. Headlining the list are […]

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Heal the World with Ink and Color: in Memory of Stan Lee

Assaf Gamzu The popular culture of 2018 owes so much to Stan Lee. Every couple of months a new comic movie is released by Marvel Cinematic Universe, that undisputedly has been ruling the world of cinema for a decade now. Most of the stars – Thor, The Hulk, The Black Panther, Spider-man and others – […]

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Liberté, Egalité – Yes, Fraternité – No: The Philosopher Who Challenged the Socialist Model

Two contradictory ideologies dealing with distributive justice were dominant in modern history: the model of the Socialist State, that strive to expand government’s power and interference in the lives of citizens, and the opposite model of the Liberal State, that focused on individual rights and wished to limit governmental interference in private lives. In a […]

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Two Hanukkah Narratives – Choose Yours

In the early 1930’s, an unknown young Jewish lyricist called Aharon Ze’ev published the poem “We are carrying torches” – Anu Nos’im Lapidim, which became popular overnight among Zionist sing along lovers. It was a one-liner essence of all Zionist core ideas: No miracle happened for us / No cruise of oil did we find […]