I want ten students.

Hello friends and colleagues: Thank you for your consistent support and enthusiasm. I am delighted that so many people share my passion for Jewish history and thought, and consider it a rare privilege to share my research with you online and in person. I wish you all a blessed New Year of spiritual and material […]

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In Search of the Crypto-Jews of Portugal (What I did over my Summer Vacation)

The invisible yet palpable echo of the crypto-Jewish tradition resonates through Portugal like the far side of a conversation faintly overheard in another person’s cell phone. A rush of sibilants or an exclamation of laughter confirms the reality of the distant interlocutor, even though we do not see her before us. The history of Portugal’s crypto-Jewish community is similarly measured by absences—a mezuzah scar on a doorway, a bolt-hole for a Torah scroll hidden behind a false wall, a disappeared Juderia marked, if at all, by a 21st century plaque.

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Camp Guard Associated with the Murder of the Piaseczno Rebbe Extradited to Germany

Hasidim of the Aish Kodesh should take note: this is likely the face of one of the murderers of Rabbi Kalonymus Kalmish Shapira hy”d. Jakiw Palij, a longtime resident of Queens, New York, was recently extradited to Germany for filing false information while immigrating to the United States after World War II. Palij served as […]

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Two Public Talks on Tisha B’Av

Hello students, friends and colleagues– We still have a few hours before the onset of Shabbat and the possible arrival of Mashiach, but if we have to make it through another Tisha B’Av– If you are in Fort Lee, NJ Sunday morning or Crown Heights, Brooklyn Sunday afternoon, please join me for presentations on the […]

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