The First Pillar of Jewish Law: The Rif

http://www.aish.com/jl/h/h/The-First-Pillar-of-Jewish-Law-The-Rif.html The First Pillar of Jewish Law: The Rif by Dr. Henry Abramson Appreciating the trailblazing scholarly work of Rabbi Yitzchak al-Fasi. Students with even a cursory familiarity with Halacha, Jewish law, are aware of the importance of the Shulchan Aruch, Rabbi Yosef Karo’s comprehensive 15th century magnum opus that informs, directs, and inspires the […]

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The Soviet Campaign to Eliminate Passover

http://www.aish.com/jw/s/The-Soviet-Campaign-to-Eliminate-Passover.html The Soviet Campaign to Eliminate Passover by Dr. Henry Abramson “Red Haggadahs” were published in the 1920s with the explicit goal of replacing belief in God with faith in Communist Russia. One of the most unusual episodes in the long history of anti-Semitic persecution is the Soviet anti-Jewish campaign of the 1920s. Utilizing formerly […]

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Tractate “Prohibition” (Purim Torah)

Tractate “Prohibition”People of the Book: Great Works of the Jewish Tradition Dr. Henry Abramson “Reverend” Gershon Kiss of Brooklyn captured the spirit of Purim brilliantly in his 1929 parody of the Talmud, “Tractate Prohibition,” which pokes fun at both Rabbinic dialectic and American society. Written in a combination of Hebrew, Aramaic and the occasional Anglicism […]

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Who Was R. Yaakov Emden?

Intimidated by neither power nor position,  Rabbi Yaakov Emden left a remarkable literary legacy in the form of his autobiography, Megilat Sefer. This brief lecture provides an overview of his life and work, including his epic controversy with Rabbi Yonasan Eibeschutz. R. Yaakov Emden, Megilat Sefer People of the Book: Great Works of the Jewish […]

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Who Was R. Moshe Hagiz?

  Detractors and admirers alike called him a “zealot, the son of a zealot” a fitting title for arguably the most divisive figure in early eighteenth-century Jewish history. A native son of Jerusalem, Rabbi Moshe Chagiz (1671-1751) originally journeyed to Europe to raise funds for his beleaguered Yeshiva. Within a short period of time, however, […]

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Who Was R. Pinhas Hurwitz?

  Two hundred years ago, Sefer Ha-Brit was a fixture in the library of every educated Jewish home. First published anonymously in 1797, this hugely popular 800-page tome appeared in forty editions, including translations into Ladino and Yiddish. It was widely read by Ashkenazim and Sefardim, western and eastern European Jews, Hasidim, Mitnagdim and Maskilim […]

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Sefer Ha-Heshek

People Of The Book: Classic Works Of The Jewish Tradition This article originally appeared in the Five Towns Jewish Times on March 3, 2016. Click here for a video lecture on the topic. By Dr. Henry Abramson Working in the abandoned Judaica collection of the Kiev Vernadsky Library during the immediate post-Soviet period, a brilliant […]

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The Tzemach David

The Tzemach David People Of The Book:  Classic Works Of The Jewish Tradition (This article originally appeared in the Five Towns Jewish Times on February 11, 2016.) David Gans (1541–1613) was a scientist and a rabbi in an age when the dual pursuit of these intellectual passions was a life-threatening occupation. He studied Torah under Rabbi […]

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