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Jewish Political Thought

Ours is an age in which the notion that men and women are created with distinct and complementary purposes is seen as little more than thinly veiled bigotry. But one of the great Jewish contributions to civilization is the idea that the sexes are not identical to, but are instead in need of, one another. […]

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Barak's Rule

February 1, 2017 | By: Robert H. Bork

In The Judge in a Democracy, Aharon Barak, President of the Supreme Court of Israel from 1995 to 2006, advances a robust defense of what has come to be called—in American parlance—judicial activism. In Barak’s telling, judges may properly “give a statute new meaning, a dynamic meaning, that seeks to bridge the gap between law […]

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On Wednesday, September 14, 2016, alumni of Tikvah’s advanced programs and friends of Mosaic came to an intimate discussion between the Israeli philosopher Yoram Hazony and the American author and historian Walter Russell Mead. The subject of their conversation was the same as the title of Yoram Hazony’s essay in Mosaic: “Nationalism and the Future of Western Freedom.” Hazony […]

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Rav Kook's Economic Thought

October 5, 2016

Rabbi Abraham Isaac Kook is a founder of religious Zionism and guide for many today. Perhaps less well known are his views on economics. In this lecture, Tikvah alum Rabbi Netanel Elyashiv explains that Rav Kook has a free market teaching about economics, in which he provides spiritual meaning to the workings of the market […]

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Press play below to listen to the podcast, download it in the iTunes Store, or stream it via Stitcher. Chapter 1: The Brexit Vote, the Meaning of Nationalism, and the Biblical Roots of the Nation-State Chapter 2: The Seduction of Empire: The Nation-State’s Rival Chapter 3: Evaluating Protestant Nationalism Chapter 4: Nationalism vs. Liberalism Chapter 5: Neo-Nationalism, Neo-Catholicism, and […]

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Israeli self-doubt about its own legitimacy grows out of a concern that it cannot be both Jewish and democratic. This anxiety has made its way into the Israeli Education Ministry’s curriculum. In this 2001 Azure essay, Daniel Polisar offers suggestions about how Israeli civic education can be renewed so that young Israelis will be taught […]

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Why don’t Jews like the Christians who like them? Renowned political scientist James Q. Wilson explores this question in a 2008 article for City Journal. He describes evangelical support for Zionism and the Jewish people, Jewish distrust of evangelical supporters, and even the Jewish penchant to ally with hostile groups. The explanation lies, Wilson suspects, […]

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Why does the Torah prohibit eating certain types of animals? Several explanations have been posited: From Maimonides’s suggestion that the prohibitions are rooted in a concern for health, to Samson Raphael Hirsch’s explanation concerning the connection of one’s body to one’s soul. In this 2006 Azure article, Meir Soloveichik argues these explanations misunderstand the true […]

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Israel has had great success providing a home for Jews from around the world. The increasing diversity that results from each wave of immigrants poses challenges for the Jewish state, however; chief among which are those that highlight the tensions inherent in the relationship in Israel between religion and state. Such tensions are on display in this […]

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The politics of ancient Israel were theocratic, federal, and republican, Daniel J. Elazar argues in this 1973 Tradition article. Deriving his understanding of the political teaching of the Hebrew Bible by analyzing the its account of Israelite history and the judgment it casts upon alternative political institutions, Elazar takes the reader through the four constitutional […]

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