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Rare Mahzorim at your Fingertips

October 09, 2011

At this time of year, many of us are spending much time with our mahzor. While many of us are using the Gates of Repentance, Birnbaum or Koren, (I use the excellent Goldschmidt critical edition) many variations of the liturgy exist in manuscripts in the HUC collection and beyond.

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When We Remembered Zion

September 26, 2011

“Zion” in Jewish scripture [mentioned 108 times] is sometimes the Holy City with its sacred associations, sometimes the sorrowful Land of Israel awaiting the return of her exiled children. The yearning for Zion in its religious, literary and political forms found expression in travel & photo books, Hebrew primers, pilgrimage diaries and religious pamphlets.
Our new display reflects some of the Frances-Henry Library’s holdings of this literature.

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Banned Books Week Again

September 22, 2011

Two years ago we put together a small display of banned books at the Frances-Henry Library. We focused on censorship imposed on Jewish world texts, whether exercised by outsiders who banned, burned and “edited” Jewish sacred and secular texts, or by insiders; rabbis, librarians, teachers who stopped short of burning books, but did not shy away from banishing, banning and censoring books that they deemed blasphemous, inappropriate, and sacrilegious.

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On the Cost of Scholarship, or: There is No Garage Sale @ Brill

September 14, 2011

just initialed a purchase requisition for 14 books – not an uncommon act of an academic library’s director. The price tag: $3032.00 – less and less an uncommon price tag for scholarly publications. Why should you care? Because as I was excitedly reading the back-cover summaries and endorsements, pouring over their rich tables of content, and congratulating myself on once again putting our collection on the cutting edge of scholarship, it dawned on me that it may take a long time before anyone else gets excited over any of them, or over the total amounts that our library system invests in anticipating and meeting the needs of our faculty and students.

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Israeli Summer Harvest – New Books from Israel

July 26, 2011

I love the end of the budget year! When all the research and curricular materials have been added to our collection, and some money is left in the budget, my inner Israeli signals “go for it!” This is when I go shopping for books that illuminate contemporary interests of the Israeli cultural and academic universes, just in case somebody will come looking…

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The Pleasures of Meeting the Sachs Family

May 05, 2011

Some stories are better told from the end. Being an avid reader of stories, I know that the good ones reveal what you had hoped for as they unfold: a great plot, fascinating characters, and amazing chapters that make up the book of life as they take you on the journey back in time.

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The Study of Healing

April 26, 2011

The library recently received the new book Midrash & Medicine, edited by Dr. William (Bill) Cutter. I had the opportunity to speak with him and his colleague Michele Prince,Director of the Kalsman Institute on Judaism and Health about this collection.

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Visionary author about visionary synagogues

March 08, 2011

I recently had the pleasure of interviewing HUC faculty member, Dr. Isa Aron about her newest book.

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One Aspect of the Changing Role of Jewish Women

March 08, 2011

I recently had the pleasure of speaking with Dr. Dvora Weisberg, Director, School of Rabbinic Studies; Associate Professor of Rabbinical Literature in Los Angeles, about her latest book, Levirate Marriage and the Family in Ancient Judaism (Brandeis University Press, 2009)

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Attack of the QR Codes!

January 31, 2011

Have you noticed these funny looking checker-board codes sprinkled in the journal section of the Frances-Henry Library?

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