As 2022 comes to a close, the Lehrhaus team is proud to feature some highlights from our contributions this past year. Yet again, we have published at least one hundred original pieces across a wide variety of genres. Since its inception in 2016, the Lehrhaus continues to remain at the center for conversations and ideas in the Modern Orthodox community and beyond.
This year, we appointed Yisroel Ben-Porat as our first-ever Managing Editor, which has helped us to streamline our operations and provide an even better product. Our Torah u-Madda symposium inspired countless conversations on social media and other spaces. Among comparable publications, we also lead the way in publishing poetry on Jewish themes, a genre in which we have experienced significant growth over the past year. Our editors and authors have received national recognition for their work, including authors who have published books that draw heavily from content originally published on our site.
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Our most impactful moment in 2022 was “Reclaiming Torah u-Madda: A Symposium.” Spearheaded by editor Yosef Lindell, we featured fourteen original articles and five letters grappling with the notion of Torah u-Madda, which has been a byword in the Modern Orthodox community for decades. The symposium drew on the wisdom and talent of diverse voices within the community, exploring the past, present, and future of Torah u-Madda. Click here to download the entire symposium in a PDF.
Author Ben Greenfield recently won the Ateret Zvi Prize in Hiddushei Torah for his essay “A Time to Mourn: Aveilut as Minor Holiday,” which explores why Hazal chose to situate Hilkhot Aveilut in tractate Moed Katan. Editor Miriam Zami’s piece “Laughter in the Face of Tragedy: The Enduring Resistance of Rabbi Akiva,” was recognized as a runner-up to the award.
In memory of various Torah personalities that we lost this past year, check out tributes to R. Simcha Krauss by Seth Winberg and Dan Margulies. The passing of R. Dr. David Weiss Halivni prompted reflections from Elli Fischer, Elana Stein Hain, and Channa Lockshin Bob.
Looking further back, Zachary Rothblatt’s “Revival of the Forgotten Talmud” provided a sweeping overview of the history of the Talmud Yerushalmi, from its earliest manuscripts to the modern editions, commentaries, and scholarship. We also published several essays on the thought of twentieth century Torah personalities such as the Rav and Rav Kook, and on recent thinkers such as R. Lord Jonathan Sacks and R. Dr. Norman Lamm (aside from discussions of them in the Torah u-Madda symposium).
Finally, we published several widely-read and timely pieces on contemporary issues in Halakhah, such as the emergence of Instagram as a paradigm shift in taharat ha-mishpahah education and the halakhic work of R. Eliezer Melamed. In the wake of the Supreme Court overturning Roe v. Wade, the Lehrhaus featured an exchange of views on what Jewish law wants American abortion law to be. Click here for the first article, here for the letters to the editor, and here for the author’s response.