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Meir Soloveichik Teaches

JEWISH IDEAS
and the
AMERICAN FOUNDERS

  • Videos

    8 Episodes

    In a series of eight enlightening and entertaining lectures, Rabbi Dr. Meir Soloveichik explores the Jewish ideas that inspired America’s founding generation and helped make the United States such an exceptional home for the Jews.

  • Guide

    Study Guide

    Use our in-depth study guide to see original source material, put historical events in context, and probe each episode more deeply with thought-provoking discussion questions.

  • $40

    Enrollment Cost

Meet Meir Soloveichik

Meet Meir Soloveichik

Rabbi Dr. Meir Y. Soloveichik is director of the Zahava and Moshael Straus Center for Torah and Western Thought at Yeshiva University and the rabbi of Congregation Shearith Israel, the oldest Jewish congregation in the United States. Prior to this, Soloveichik served as associate rabbi at Congregation Kehilath Jeshurun in Manhattan. Rabbi Soloveichik has lectured throughout the United States, in Europe, and in Israel to both Jewish and non-Jewish audiences on topics relating to Jewish theology, bioethics, wartime ethics, and Jewish-Christian relations. His essays on these subjects have appeared in the Wall Street Journal, Mosaic, Commentary, First Things, the Jewish Review of Books, Tradition, and the Torah U-Madda Journal. In August 2012, he gave the invocation at the opening session of the Republican National Convention in Tampa, Florida. He is the son of Rabbi Eliyahu Soloveichik, grandson of the late Rabbi Ahron Soloveichik, and the great nephew of the late Rabbi Joseph B. Soloveitchik.

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8+ Hours of Videos & Bonus Content

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Press Coverage

Mosaic
Philadelphia Jewish Exponent Tablet

Episodes

01 The Yiddish Letter and the Declaration: The Incredible Story of Jonas Phillips, the First Truly American Jew

Rabbi Soloveichik traces the life of Jonas Phillips, a German Jew who came to America in 1756 as an indentured servant and became a dedicated patriot who fathered of one of America’s most important Jewish families.

  • The Yiddish Letter and the Declaration: The Incredible Story of Jonas Phillips, the First Truly American Jew | 55:15

  • Guide

    Study Guide

  • Mp3

    MP3

02 America’s Passover: Franklin, Jefferson, and the Seal of the United States

What relation did the founding have to Judaism? Rabbi Soloveichik investigates the story surrounding the creation of the United States’ official seal and the committee convened to determine that what the seal would be.

  • America’s Passover: Franklin, Jefferson, and the Seal of the United States | 1:13:42

  • Guide

    Study Guide

  • Mp3

    MP3

04 The Founding Father and the Huppah

Returning to the Phillips’ family story, Rabbi Soloveichik recounts the occasion of the marriage of Jonas’ daughter Rachel and the founding father who attended her wedding.

  • The Founding Father and the Huppah | 1:01:41

  • Guide

    Study Guide

  • Mp3

    MP3

05 Washington, Seixas, and Giving Thanks

Ratification of the Constitution was a contentious process, but America’s Jews, in contrast to many other religious groups, supported ratification by large margins.

  • Washington, Seixas, and Giving Thanks | 1:11:09

  • Guide

    Study Guide

  • Mp3

    MP3

06 Continue to Water them with the Dews of Heaven

After George Washington’s inauguration, the divided Jewish communities of the new nation sent him three separate letters. His responses teach us a great deal about America's relationship with the Jewish people.

  • Continue to Water them with the Dews of Heaven | 1:15:23

  • Guide

    Study Guide

  • Mp3

    MP3

07 Adams, Jefferson, and the Jews

Thomas Jefferson and John Adams—the founding generation’s preeminent intellectual leaders—differed mightily about the value of the Jews and Judaism.

  • Adams, Jefferson, and the Jews | 1:01:54

  • Guide

    Study Guide

  • Mp3

    MP3

08 The Home We Build Together

The Jewish wedding canopy reminds Americans of their distinct conception of religious freedom and the remarkable possibility of integration without assimilation.

  • The Home We Build Together | 1:10:34

  • Guide

    Study Guide

  • Mp3

    MP3

Join Rabbi Dr. Meir Soloveichik as he explores the life and legacy of Jonas Phillips, the first truly American Jew, and sheds light on the Jewish ideas that inspired America’s Founding Fathers.

Enroll for $40.