Contact Winter 2005

For those seeking to engage the next generation of Jews, the college years present both opportunities and risks. In recent years, the community has turned its attention to the former. Multi-culturalism and self-discovery — two qualities of campus life that sometimes frighten the insular — have the potential to galvanize students towards a rediscovery of Jewish culture.

Contact Winter 2004

For the past dozen years, many American Jewish institutions have tailored programming towards that elusive yet abundant breed: the unaffiliated Jew. Millions have been spent on new programs that promise to reach Jews who lie outside the community’s orbit.

Contact Winter 2003

The concept of clal yisrael teaches that the Jewish people are bound together in mutual experience, responsibility and destiny. In the United States and Israel, the countries in which the vast majority of the world’s Jewish population dwells, it has not always been easy to apprehend our shared experience.

Contact Winter 2002

Years ago, Jewish day schools were generally associated with the most rigorously observant segments of the Jewish community. But things have begun to change. According to a 1999 Avi Chai census of American Jewish day schools, day school enrollment saw a dramatic increase in the 1990s. Among community and non-Orthodox day schools, enrollment rose by nearly 25 percent.

Contact Winter 2001

If it is true that all systems tend inexorably toward disharmony, then the Jewish people might be the perfect model of disorder. The theme of disunity, of a people warring against itself, bobs through the major waves of Jewish history. The Bible itself chronicles enough sibling squabbling to fuel several lifetimes of lawsuits.

Contact Winter 2000

The University and the Jews: An Era of Renaissance or an Age of Darkness?

There is a great debate taking place within the American Jewish community as to whether we live in a period of decline or of opportunity in terms of Jewish life and identity. Needless to say, and perhaps in sharper and more intensified ways, the same socio-religious dilemmas and struggles at the heart of this internal debate affect the lives of the large number of young Jews on college campuses. This issue of Contact is devoted to exploring the topic.

Contact Winter 1998

In the sixties, the popular mantra among American youth was “Don’t trust anyone over thirty!” Those who were older and in positions of authority and leadership were viewed—at best— with suspicion and treated—at worst—as spiritually bankrupt, having sold out their ideals for the sake of acquiring fancier cars and bigger homes.