The Accidental Iniquity of Amalek

In a fascinating analysis, Gavriel Lakser places the Megillah in the context of the overarching struggle between the Jewish people and Amalek.

Joy at Last: Reflections on the End of Esther

Erica Brown explores the deeper meaning of joy in Megillat Esther and beyond.

Puritan Purim

How did Esther shape the way Puritans saw the ideal role of the contemporary woman? Cotton Mather, a major player in the Salem Witch Trials, had much to say in his Ornaments for the Daughters of Zion. Stuart Halpern of Yeshiva University explains, wishing us all a Puritan Purim.

Moses in the Teiva: An Act of Hope or Despair?

Was the teiva an attempt to save Moshe's life? David Fried challenges our assumptions about the purpose of the wicker basket in the river.

With Liberty and Presents for All

Through an analysis of Hanukkah ads, Yael Buechler explains how Yiddish newspapers used the Old Country language to acculturate Jews to the New Country.

The Fourth Chapter of Avot as an extended reflection on Epicurean Philosophy

In the spirit of Hanukkah, Yaakov Jaffe offers an intriguing thesis tying together a series of Mishnayot in the fourth chapter of Pirkei Avot: they are all responding to various aspects of Epicurean philosophy.

Reish Lakish and Rabbi Yohanan on the Power of Repentance: A Reappraisal

How does Reish Lakish’s classic view of repentance help to account for the tragic dissolution of his relationship with Rabbi Yohanan?

The Inverted Halakhah of Simhat Torah

Chaim Saiman comments on the nature of Simhat Torah.

Anonymous Leadership:  The Emotional Drama in Ishay Ribo’s Seder ha-Avodah

Shira Hecht-Koller and Aaron Koller explore the worship of the Kohen Gadol through the voice of Ishay Ribo.

Pat Yisra’el and Two Approaches to the Aseret Yemei Teshuvah

David Fried explores the humra of pat Yisrael during the aseret yemei teshuvah.

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