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The Birthplace of Infertility

Infertility figures as a tragic theme not only on Rosh Hashanah but also in biblical narrative and modern life. This morning, Yael Leibowitz writes lyrically on The Birthplace of Infertility.

Written and Sealed (and Stamped) in the Book of Life

We will all be much more distant from each other this Rosh Hashanah. That’s why, argues Ranana Dine, it’s time to revive the tradition of sending physical greeting cards.

From Graduation to Contagion: Jewish Physicians Confront Plague in 1631

Contemporary physicians have been heroic in the battle against COVID-19, but what was it like to be one of a handful of Jewish doctors confronting the Bubonic Plague during the 17th-century in Italy? Prolific medical halakhist and historian Eddie Reichman takes a close look at the four Jewish graduates of the Padua medical school class of 1623.

Also the Diseases

At the height of the cholera epidemic in 1831, Hatam Sofer delivered a timely sermon on a perplexing midrash to Parshat Ki Tavo. The take-home, suggests Elli Fischer, is all-too familiar in the COVID era.

Parshat Ki Tavo: The Curse of the Law

Baruch Sterman describes how an encounter with a missionary led him to a greater understanding of Ramban's commentary on this week's Parshah.

Traditional Revolutionaries

Ilan Fuchs reviews Naomi Seidman’s book Sarah Schenirer and the Bais Yaakov Movement.

Holistic Repentance: Life as a Story

Natan Oliff explores the theological implications of teshuva in a world that is God’s prescripted story.

Prophecy is a Mitzvah

Alex Ozar analyzes the writings of R. Soloveitchik and several other contemporary Jewish thinkers to argue for the existence of a Mitzvah of become a prophet.

Signing Up for a COVID-19 Vaccine Trial

May one opt to participate in a potentially dangerous vaccine trial? This theoretical halakhic question has suddenly become ll-too-urgent. Sharon Galper Grossman and Shamai Grossman explore.

Did Rashi Draw the Diagrams in his Commentary to Eruvin?

Rashi’s commentary to Eruvin contains many explanatory diagrams. In anticipation of the Daf Yomi cycle’s study of the tractate beginning tomorrow, Eli Genauer shares some manuscripts that shed light on whether Rashi drew these pictures.