Category Archives: uncategorized

New Materialism and the Study of Religion (Manuel Vásquez)

Manuel Vásquez’s More Than Belief: A Materialist Theory of Religion has pride of place in the fairly recent materialist turn in Religion Studies. The three keyterms are embodiment, emplacement, and practice (p.325). The force of the title is to take … Continue reading

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How Not to Dialogue About Israel and Palestine (In the Land of Pomegranates)

The few American reviews that I found online seem frustrated without understanding just why Hava Kohav Beller’s documentary In the Land of Pomegranates is such a hopeless reflection upon the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. The documentary follows a group of young Israeli Jews … Continue reading

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(Burning Excrement) צוֹאָה רוֹתֵחַת (Trump & Bannon)

There is a place in Hell and levels there called Boiling Excrement, where there is filth of souls —those who are cleansed of all the filth of this world. They are cleansed and ascend, and that filth remains there; and … Continue reading

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Downtown Sacramento Simulation

A built lived space always mimics an idea. The photographer Thomas Demand takes an ordinary photograph of a very neutral interior space; he then constructs a cardboard model, which he then shoots. Downtown Sacramento looks a lot like that –small … Continue reading

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(z”l) Remembering Neil Gillman (Bill Plevan)

In Conservative Judaism, will his legacy be forgotten? A working Jewish philosopher-theologian and rabbi at the Jewish Theological Seminary, Neil Gillman (z’l) was a genuine liberal who embraced relativity and tension in religion as a source of creativity and vitality. … Continue reading

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Affect, Sentiment & Other Aspects of Rabbinic Theology (Solomon Schechter)

Somewhere in the San Francisco Bay Area, I must have bought the handsome 1961 paperback edition of Solomon Schechter’s 1909 Aspects of Rabbinic Theology from a used book shop when I was in graduate school. It then sat on my … Continue reading

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AJS 2017 Highlights

Hated, hated, hated being in Washington D.C. this year for the Association for Jewish Studies conference, what with the monster just down the street in the White House and the zombie tourists at the Mall. After three days off grid, … Continue reading

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