Art, Entertainment, & Popular Culture


Black and white photograph of Adolph S. Ochs.

Do you enjoy the Times Square ball drop ushering in the New Year? You have American Jewish newspaper publisher and immigrant Adolph S. Ochs to thank for this beloved tradition. Ochs was born in Cincinnati, Ohio on March 12th, 1858. Ochs began his work in the newspaper business at a very young age, delivering newspapers,…

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Henry Ford and Antisemitism: The Notorious “Dearborn Independent”

Henry Ford (1863-1947) is famous most generally for founding the Ford Motor Company, developing the assembly-line technique for mass production, and creating the first automobile affordable to middle-class Americans. He is relevant to Jewish studies, however, because he was hailed by many as an “antisemite.” But on what grounds? In the early 1920s, Ford sponsored…

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Can a rabbi and a Beatle make beautiful music together?

Give Peace a Chance EP 1969

This was the question posed by the May 31st, 1969 publication of “The Montreal Gazette” in reference to John Lennon’s first solo single released while still with the Beatles – ‘Give Peace a Chance’. The album, recorded during Lennon and Yoko Ono’s ‘Bed-In for Peace’ to protest the Vietnam War, featured rabbi and reform activist…

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The First Edition of The Israelite (1854)

First edition of The Israelite 7-15-1854

On July 15, 1854, Isaac M. Wise published the first edition of his weekly newspaper The Israelite, which would later become The American Israelite. At the time of its creation, there was no Jewish publication west of the Alleghenies. In its first pages, Wise detailed the goals of the newspaper, saying that it will “favor enlightenment,…

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