Magazine article Judaism: A Quarterly Journal of Jewish Life and Thought

Editor's Corner

Magazine article Judaism: A Quarterly Journal of Jewish Life and Thought

Editor's Corner

Article excerpt

It is not a mistake. This really is the Fall-Winter 2006 issue, even though the last one was "Summer-Fall 2006" and these are the waning days of Summer 2007. Somewhere along the line, we got out of sync with our publication dates (as librarians keep reminding us).

Getting "in sync" is important for another reason, as well. We live in what is called the "information age," although that term does not even begin to describe the possibilities technology has opened up. Of primary importance to us at JUDAISM are the ability to publish articles at more frequent intervals and the opportunity to obtain more immediate feedback from you, our readers. We can do both if we transform JUDAISM from a printed journal into an electronic one.

That is not as easy a task as that may sound, however. There are a number of matters that need to be addressed and technical issues that need to be resolved. Rest assured, however, that you will be informed of any such change.

As regards the current issue, it begins with a pair of mysteries, of a sort. Up first, David Arnow explores the place of Moses in the Haggadah. The mystery here is not why Moses does not appear in the traditional text, but why nearly everyone seems to think he does not.

Sarah, on the other hand, really is missing from the text of Genesis from the moment she succeeds in having Hagar and Ishmael thrown out of Abraham's encampment. When next we meet her, she has died after apparently living apart from her husband for a period of time. In between, of course, Abraham tries to sacrifice Sarah's "miracle baby."

David J. Zucker offers, as he puts it, "an alternative way of understanding" what happened during those missing years. As he also states, his proposals "are speculation. Some may see this as a form of modern midrash, understanding the ancient text in a newly imaginative way." Some, on the other hand, may take serious exception to Zucker's "solution." We welcome your responses (as we do, of course, to all the articles we publish).

There is no mystery regarding how A.J. Heschel felt about the assimilationist tendencies of moden Jewish thinkers. For the centenary of Heschel's birth, Byron L. Sherwin examines his mentor's fears that Judaism is being turned into an unacceptable and grotesque hybrid by the never-ending attempts to marry non-Jewish thoughts and ideas to it. …

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