Commentary Magazine


Welcome to the Archive

More than a half-century of opinion and ideas. Still timeless.

View : All Months | Jan | Feb | Mar | Apr | May | Jun | Jul | Aug | Sep | Oct | Nov | Dec
January, 1949Back to Top
On Commentary
by Our Readers
To The Editor: I need not tell you that I have been following with very much satisfaction the progress of COMMENTARY, the continuing high standard of material and the increasing number of advertisements.

A Point of Kashruth
by Our Readers
To The Editor: In the amusing story, “Memo from the Thirty-Six,” in the September issue, the translator's slip is showing when he transforms the Hebrew Shor Ha Bor into a Wild Boar.

One Man's Meat
by Our Readers
To The Editor: The review of Howard Fast's My Glorious Brothers in your December issue by Milton Himmelfarb is a wretched piece of work.

Thanks, But—
by Our Readers
To The Editor: I do not wish to appear ungrateful, and I appreciate Myron Kaufmann's willingness to forgive me for certain mild prejudices so long as I refrain from translating them into action.

Advance Intelligence
by Our Readers
To The Editor: I have read with much interest Dr. Kurt List's article about Arnold Schoenberg's cantata, A Survivor of Warsaw, in the November COMMENTARY It anticipated the first performance of the work in Albuquerque and the article in Time magazine. Schoenberg's new work is unknown to most of us, the score is not published yet.

Brandeis and Holmes
by Our Readers
To The Editor: I have read the Solomon Bloom article on Louis D. Brandeis in the October COMMENTARY. There are so many imponderable X's in the life of Brandeis that no article about him is without excitement to me, who loved him.

Cloak-and-Dagger Dept.
by Our Readers
To The Editor: Having only recently had the opportunity of reading your November 1948 issue, I should like to protest strongly against the stab-in-the-back article by Robert Weltsch on the Bernadotte Plan. It came as no surprise that a man like Weltsch who even kept on pleading for collaboration with the British oppressors at a time when Jewish Resistance fighters were strung up on the gallows in Palestine jails, should favor this sinister plan. But I am less concerned with the thoroughly discredited Dr.

Our Almost-Clear Crystal Ball
by Our Readers
To The Editor: Robert Cobb Myers' “Opinion Polls and Public Policy” in the November COMMENTARY is an excellent analysis and one that is very much needed today. We shall doubtless have a flood of good critical articles now that November 2 has come and gone.

On Being Taken Up by “Society”
by Our Readers
To The Editor: I have read with great interest the article “A Refugee Looks at Anti-Semitism Here,” by my friend Robert Pick, in the September COMMENTARY.

Tales of My People, by Sholem Asch
by
Pious Tearjerker Tales Of My People. By Sholem Asch. New York, G. P. Putnam's Sons. 272 pp. $3.00.   In His early novelette, “The Little Town,” reprinted in this collection, Sholem Asch turns on the “folk” the benevolent airs of a patriarch elated by holiday wine.

Europe's Democracy and “American Imperialism”:
Despite Truman's Election the Fear Persists

by George Lichtheim
At least as important as the physical assistance that the Marshall Plan brings to European reconstruction, is the political state of mind in which this aid is given and received.

Does the Jew Exist?
Sartre's Morality Play About Anti-Semitism

by Harold Rosenberg
Jean-Paul Sartre's three articles on anti-Semitism and the modem Jew, published in Commentary in April, May, and June of 1948, were perhaps the most widely debated articles yet to appear in this magazine.

The “Joint” Takes a Human Inventory:
The End of the DP Problem Is in Sight

by Hal Lehrman
As Victorious Allied troops advanced into Hitler's Europe, the American Joint Distribution Committee, seasoned by nearly three decades of experience, was on hand to bring the first promise of rehabilitation to the Jews who remained alive.

Secret Jews of Persia:
A Century-Old Marrano Community in Asia

by Walter Fischel
Walter J. Fischel, formerly a member of the faculty of the Hebrew University in Jerusalem and at present professor of Semitic languages and literature at the University of California in Berkeley, is an internationally-recognized authority on the life and history of the Near and Middle East and of Oriental Jews in particular.

The Poetry of Isaac Rosenberg:
“Sudden the Lightning Flashed Upon a Figure. . . .”

by Marius Bewley
In The three decades since he was killed in action in France at the age of twenty-eight, Isaac Rosenberg, one of the British “war poets” of World War I, has been increasingly recognized as one of the most authentic talents in the literary generation foreshadowing the development of modem poetry.

Moby Dick:
A Reflection

by Earl Hendler
The pure and sacred evil that was Ahab Split up the snapping seas. So absolute his pride, from pole to pole no whale could hide. Another's commerce, full of oil and drab, would never play his line strung like a lute with notes of harpoons struck in the whale's white side. A spout from Moby's brow spilled some salt tunes that jarred his metaphysics to the point where God Himself could speak but in typhoons. His world, lopsided, hobbled on one joint. A lunatic's integrity that fails on fish must justify itself to whales of meaning larger than the simple quest, and so his Pequod sailed abstractly West. _____________  

UN Breathing Spell on Palestine:
A New Phase, But the Old Problems Remain

by Robert Weltsch
Another UN Assembly deliberation on Palestine has adjourned with a final solution still unachieved. Yet, as ROBERT WELTSCHI indicates in this appraisal, certain decisions were taken in Paris—among them the rejection of the Bernadotte Plan—and one or two milestones passed.

Modern Artist as Synagogue Builder:
Satisfying the Needs of Today's Congregations

by Paul Goodman
At the moment there is not only lively activity in synagogue building in these states, but there is a keen concern over the beauty and expressiveness of synagogue architecture and ceremonial objects and settings.

The Time My Grandfather Died
A Story

by Wolf Mankowitz
 This story is one of a series depicting East European life; other stories from the series have appeared in the magazines Tide and Modern Reading, and have been broadcast over the BBC. _____________   At the cheder to which my grandfather went as a pupil there was no privy.

From the American Scene: The Fleshpots of Maine
by Toby Shafter
Previous articles in this department have drawn portraits of various American Jewish communities: for instance, New Haven (November, 1947) and “Spruceton” (June, 1948).

Cedars of Lebanon: Reason and Faith
by Saadya Gaon
Saadya (Ben Joseph) Gaon, one of the greatest of all Jewish philosophers and theologians, was born in Fayyum in Upper Egypt in 882, the son of a poor but learned man.

On the Horizon: The Decent German: Film Portrait
by Siegfried Kracauer
On the Horizon, devoted to comment on cultural and social events and trends, presents this month an analysis by Siegfried Kracauer of a postwar German film, Marriage in the Shadows, which reveals disturbing facts about the present state of the German mind; and a report by Heinz Politzer on the interaction of American, East European, and Israeli culture in New York's Yiddish Theater.

On the Horizon: Starring Schwartz and Skulnik
by Heinz Politzer
On the Horizon, devoted to comment on cultural and social events and trends, presents this month an analysis by Siegfried Kracauer of a postwar German film, Marriage in the Shadows, which reveals disturbing facts about the present state of the German mind; and a report by Heinz Politzer on the interaction of American, East European, and Israeli culture in New York's Yiddish Theater.

The Study of Man: Comic Books and Other Horrors
by Norbert Muhlen
Norbert Muhlen here attempts to turn available social-scientific light on a continuously perplexing problem for parents and educators: what is the effect of the prevailing terror movies, radio programs, and comic books on the minds of the children who consume them in such enormous quantities? Dr.

Benya Krik the Gangster, by Isaak Babel
by John Berryman
The Style of Babel Benya Krik, The Gangster and other stories. By Isaak Babel. Edited by Avrahm Yarmolinsky. Schocken Books.122 pp. $1.50.   Critics of Babel's work—European critics, that is, for in this country he is imperfectly available and little known—have not found it very easy to describe.

The Birth of Israel, by Jorge Garcia-Granados; We Need Not Fail, by Sumner Welles; Hate, Hope and High Explosives, by George Fie
by R. S.
The UN, Israel, and the Powers The Birth Of Israel. By Jorge Garciagranados. Knopf. 291 pp. $3.00. We Need Not Fail. By Sumner Welles. Houghton Mifflin.

Seven Books on the Negro in America
by James Baldwin
Too Late, Too Late The Negro Newspaper. by Vishnu V. Oak. Ohio, Antioch Press. 170 Pp. $2.50. Jim Crow America. by Earl Conrad. Duell, Sloan, And Pearce.

The Age of the Great Depression, by Dixon Wecter; Depression Decade, by Broadus Mitchell
by Richard Hofstadter
Historians and the Depression The Age Of The Great Depression. By Dixon Wecter. Macmillan. 362 Pp. $5.00. Depression Decade. By Broadus Mitchell. Rinehart. 462 Pp. $5.50.   Dixon Wecter, one of our ablest social historians, has written, in The Age of the Great Depression, a discursive social history of the United States from 1929 to 1941.

Freud: On War, Sex and Neurosis, by Sander Katz
by Lillian Blumberg
Freud's Sense of Tragedy Freud: On War, Sex And Neurosis. by Sander Katz, Preface and Glossary by Paul Goodman. New York, Arts and Sciences Press.

Reader Letters January 1949
by Our Readers
On Being Taken Up by "Society" To THE EDITOR OF COMMENTARY: I have read with great interest the article "A Refugee Looks at Anti-Semitism Here," by my friend Robert Pick, in the September COM- MENTARY.

February, 1949Back to Top
Violence in the Comics
by Our Readers
To the Editor: I would like to correct two inaccuracies concerning my own opinion of comic books, as represented by Norbert Muhlen's article “Comic Books and Other Horrors” [January 1949]. First, Dr.

Left Zionism
by Our Readers
To the Editor: Nathan Glazer's account [ “Rumblings on the Pastoral Left,” December 1948] of the mass meeting sponsored by the Hashomer Hatzair and the Progressive Zionist League in New York City on October 200, 1948 is a superficial, cynical, and grossly prejudiced report. Mr.

German and Jew
by Our Readers
To the Editor: I have just had the opportunity to read the controversy over “German anti-Semitism” in some of your recent issues, and I wish I knew how to tell you how distressing I found it.

Can Western Civilization Save Itself?
Our Present Anxiety in the Light of History

by Arnold Toynbee
In recent years there has been an increasing anxiety about the fate and future of Western civilization, and there has been no lack of prophets of doom, lay and professional, either in Great Britain or America.

Dictator of the Lodz Ghetto
The Strange History of Mordechai Chaim Rumkowski

by Solomon Bloom
Each individual whose fate contributed to the frightful total of physical and moral destruction wrought by the Nazis had a separate life and a separate story; there is no end to the stories, and yet each is unique.

The Segregation Threat in Housing:
Can We Plan for Democratic Neighborhoods?

by Charles Abrams
Charles Abrams' article, “Homes For Aryans Only,” in the May 1947 COMMENTARY, was credited with playing an important role in the struggle against restrictive covenants—a struggle which has registered some notable recent gains in the courts.

The Jewish Spirit Among the Nations:
Judaism Never Flourished in National Isolation

by Leo Baeck
The Jewish spirit has never lived in national isolation; it has expressed its genius through interplay with other great civilizations.

Austria: Rebuilding in a Volcano:
Progress Report, with Reservations

by G. R.
In the blaze of publicity over troubled Berlin and the Ruhr, the fate of Austria has received little attention. Yet, as G.

When the Season Cometh 'Round
A Story

by James Yaffe
It was Saturday afternoon, and there was a group of small boys playing baseball in the open space next to the Ninety- fifth Street playground.

Cross-Currents in Arab National Feeling:
The Islamic World is Shaken by Modern Tensions

by S. Goitein
It was not until after World War I that the Arabs became conscious of themselves as a people. Before that, all the Arabic-speaking countries of Asia, with irrelevant exceptions such as the British protectorate of Aden in Southern Arabia, formed part of the Ottoman Turkish Empire.

The Arabs' Peculiar “Anti-Semitism”:
An Old Hostility Takes a New Form

by Anonymous
The violence of Arab refusals to recognize the new Jewish state has seemed quite disproportionate to many observers. Can we explain this, and other aspects of Arab-Jewish relations, by the peculiar history and psychological character of Arab-Jewish relations in the Middle East? The author of this article asserts that the Arab feeling towards the Jew is quite different from the European.

Moving-Picture Show
by Milton Kaplan
You draw the blanket up and stretch out tall; The day is over but it flickers by Reversed, disjointed on the preview film That promises design.

From the American Scene:“Kochalein”: Poor Man's Shangri-La
by Harry Gersh
Harry Gersh here continues his very informal sociological explorations of some of the basic institutions of Jewish living. Our readers will remember his studies of “The Jewish Paintner” (January 1948) and “Mama's Cooking: Minority Report” (October 1947).

Cedars of Lebanon: Talmudic Proverbs
by
Rav Nahman said: “[This is] like a great palace with many thresholds, so that all who enter become lost and cannot leave the palace.

On the Horizon: A Year of Jewish Music
by Kurt List
This department—in which cultural and social trends and events are reported—this month presents an analysis and survey of activities in the field of Jewish music during 1948.

The Study of Man: The Downward Trend of Jewish Population
by L. Hersch
After the war, and the extermination of two-fifths of the Jewish people, the question of Jewish survival on the simple physical level has come to the fore: how many Jews will there be in the future, will the number of Jews increase or decline?  _____________   Discussions of the Jewish future: of the Jewish religion, of Jewish culture, of the new Jewish state, become ever more subtle and complex.

Tales of the Hasidim: The Later Masters, by Martin Buber; Israel and the World, by Martin Buber; Hasidism, by Martin Buber
by Leslie Fiedler
Hasidism and The Modem Jew Tales of The Hasidim: The Later Masters. by Martin Buber. Schocken Books. 352 pp. $3.75. Israel and The World. by Martin Buber. Schocken Books.

An Act of Love, by Ira Wolfert
by Isa Kapp
Primer of Complexity An Act of Love. by Ira Wolfert. Simon and Schuster. 577 pp. $3.95.   The “act of love” is a blind run by an anonymous little American soldier into the face of Japanese machine guns, for the purpose of diverting a threat to the rest of his group.

The Lost World of Thomas Jefferson, by Daniel J. Boorstin
by George Shuster
The Mind of Jefferson The Lost World of Thomas Jefiferson. by Daniel J. Boorstin. Henry Holt. 306 pp. $4.00.   Mr. Boorstin is the kind of historian who has long been nourished in the womb of academic time.

Polish Jews: A Pictorial Record, by Roman Vishniac; The Vanished World, edited by Raphael Abramovitch
by Isaac Rosenfeld
Images of a Lost World Polish Jews: A Pictorial Record by Roman Vishniac. Introduction by Abraham J. Heschel. Schocken Books.17 pp. + 31 plates.

The Story of Jericho, by John Garstang and J. B. E. Garstang
by Theodor Gaster
The Walls of Jericho The Story of Jericho. by John Garstang and J. B. E. Garstang. New edition, revised. London: Marshall, Morgan and Scott.

World Communism Today, by Martin Ebon; American Communism, by James Oneal and G. A. Werner; Pattern for World Revolution, by Yps
by Bertram Wolfe
What is Communism? World Communism Today. by Martin Ebon. Whittlesey House. 536 Pp. $4.50. American Communism. by Oneal And G. A. Werner. E. P. Dutton & Co.

Reader Letters February 1949
by Our Readers
German and Jew To THE EDITOR OF COMMENTARY: I have just had the opportunity to read the controversy over "German anti-Semitism" in some of your recent issues, and I wish I knew how to tell you how distressing I found it.

March, 1949Back to Top
Denying “Arab Anti-Semitism”
by Our Readers
To the Editor: In “The Arabs' Peculiar ‘Anti-Semitism,’” in your February issue, “Anonymous” by a stroke of the pen attributes to all Arabs an inherent hatred of all Jews.

The School of Sacred Music
by Our Readers
To the Editor: I read with great interest the article of Kurt List on Jewish music in your February issue. It was somewhat of a surprise to find that Dr.

The Comics Controversy
by Our Readers
To the Editor: I should like to offer some comments on Norbert Muhlen's article “Comic Books and Other Horrors,” in the January COMMENTARY. Dr.

What Kind of Synagogue?
by Our Readers
To the Editor: The article by Percival and Paul Goodman on current synagogue construction in the January issue was of particular interest to me.

America's Un-Marxist Revolution:
Mr. Truman Embarks on a Politically Managed Economy

by Daniel Bell
The groundswell of liberalism that elected Harry Truman and the 81st Congress caught even the most experienced political observers off balance; what is more, political analyses published since the election have been remarkably cautious and uncertain, lacking the usual assured hindsight of journalism.

The Black Jews of Ethiopia:
An Expedition to the Falashas

by Wolf Leslau
For centuries the Falashas, the “Black Jews” of Ethiopia, have been the subject of contradictory, often wild, reports and speculations, making them out to be almost everything from the descendants of the lost tribes of Israel to figments of an explorer's imagination.

Heinrich Heine: Flight and Return:
The Fallacy of Being Only a Human Being

by Martin Greenberg
In the May issue of Commentary, Jean-Paul Sartre drew a “Portrait of the Inauthentic Jew.” Perhaps the most famous and successful of all “inauthentic Jews”—at least for a while—was Heinrich Heine, who denied his Judaism in the interests of a “universal humanity.” But from his case it would seem that “inauthenticity,” if deeply enough felt and intensely enough lived, may even result in a re-assertion of “authenticity.” Such, at least, is one of the implications of Martin Greenberg's article on Heine presented here.

The Rebirth of the Italian People:
Peasant and City Man Join in a New Democracy

by Carlo Levi
Carlo Levi's Christ Stopped at Eboli, published in Italy in 1945 and in the United States in 1947, was greeted as a great document of the humanistic temper and as the finest portrait of Italian peasant life since Silone's Fontamara.

Anti-Semitic Stereotypes in Zionism:
The Nationalist Rejection of Diaspora Jewry

by Yehezkel Kaufman
The influence of 19th-century anti-Semitic concepts is more complex than is often realized—and, crowning irony of all, according to the Palestinian author of this penetrating article, they seem even to have found their way into the ideology of that Jewish movement which above all tried to reaffirm the strength and soundness of Jews and Jewish character.

Behind Bevin's Hostility to Israel:
Britain is Not Yet Reconciled to the Realities

by George Lichtheim
Britain's recognition of Israel formally marked an important stage in the strained relations between the ex-mandatory and the ex-mandate: but did it indicate a real change in these relations or in the bewildering attitudes of their chief architect, Foreign Secretary Bevin? George Lichtheim here examines the development of British-Israeli relations as they have been recently exposed on the public stage of Parliament and in the forums of the influential daily and periodical press, where British policy in Palestine is now undergoing searching examination and analysis.  _____________   London “What now confronts us is the task of readjusting our Middle Eastern policy to the new realities.

The End of Sergei Eisenstein:
Case History of an Artist under Dictatorship

by Waclaw Solski
When Sergei Eisenstein died a year ago, the world lost one of the great innovators of the modem cinema, and the Soviet Union its most prominent movie director.

The Girl Who Loved Seders
A Story

by Ralph Manheim
On the first balmy afternoon in spring a young woman lay flat on a narrow couch-bed over Eighth Street, moaning gently.

The Bride
by Hyman Swetzoff
                   —to a painting by Hyman Bloom   Where once the skin held the tongue behind and the mask together there is now the yellow death of her thin bones curving one from the other a multitude of bridges tiny venice for an insect's honeymoon. Hear she hears the echo the only re-echo of one more grain of dirt as it slips slips and falls covering her forgotten throat dressed dark waits my bride floating drifts down ecstatic she sings sang sung like anyone in her dirty catacombs no more room left for dying. _____________  

From the American Scene: An Orthodox G.I. Fights a War
by Gottfried Neuburger
For thousands of Orthodox Jews in the American Army in World War II, there was a private battle that had to be fought from day to day within the framework of the larger war—a battle to fulfill the requirements of traditional Jewish law without impairing military efficiency.

Cedars of Lebanon: To America!
by Leopold Kompert
The “Völkerfrühling”—“springtime of the nations”—which seemed to have come to Europe in the spring of the “mad year” 1848 shunned the Jewish quarters.

On the Horizon: “Gentleman's Agreement” Abroad
by Benno Weiser
This department—which reports on cultural and social trends and events—presents this month a discussion by Benno Weiser of the implications of a South American country's reaction to the film Gentleman's Agreement, a matter which has broader significance, perhaps, in view of similar doubts expressed over the showing of the film in Europe; and a survey by David Scheinert of Jewish cultural activity in Western Europe.

On the Horizon: Jewish Culture in Western Europe
by David Scheinert
This department—which reports on cultural and social trends and events—presents this month a discussion by Benno Weiser of the implications of a South American country's reaction to the film Gentleman's Agreement, a matter which has broader significance, perhaps, in view of similar doubts expressed over the showing of the film in Europe; and a survey by David Scheinert of Jewish cultural activity in Western Europe.

The Study of Man: Food or Famine?
by James Rorty
In recent months the ancient fear that man is outstripping the natural resources of the globe, and must face lower standards of living or starvation, has again been voiced in many quarters.

Tomorrow is Beautiful, by Lucy Robins Lang; The Autobiography of Sol Bloom; American Spiritual Autobiographies, edited by Louis
by Nathan Glick
The Golden Land Tomorrow is Beautiful. by Lucy Robins Lang. Macmillan. 303 Pp. $3.50. The Autobiography of Sol Bloom. by G. P. Putnam. 345 pp. $3.50. American Spiritual Autobiographies. Edited by Louis Finkelstein. Harper.

On This Side Nothing, by Alex Comfort
by George Becker
The Ghetto as Myth On this Side Nothing. by Alex Comfort. Viking. 192 pp. $2.50.   The search for a modem mythos through which to exhibit man's fate with a simplicity and austerity equal to that achieved by the Greeks has led Mr.

History of the Islamic Peoples, by Carl Brockelmann; Minorities in the Arab World, by A. H. Hourani; Inside Pan-Arabia, by M. J.
by Mordecai Kosover
Cross-Currents in Islam History of the Islamic Peoples. by Carl Brockelmann. Translated from the German by Joel Carmichael and Moshe Perlmann. G. P.

The Alphabet, by David Diringer
by Theodor Gaster
The Origins of the Alphabet The Alphabet. by David Diringer. Philosophical Library. 607 pp. $12.00.   The invention and diffusion of the alphabet, while one of the greatest of human achievements, is also one of the deepest of historical mysteries.

Power and Personality, by Harold D. Lasswell
by Dennis Wrong
Social Science Parochialism Power And Personality. by Harold D. Lasswell. Norton. 262 pp. $3.00.   Harold Lasswell was one of the first American social scientists to introduce psychiatric concepts into general social inquiry.

The Protestant Era, by Paul Tillich
by Irving Kristol
Boundaries of Belief The Protestant Era. by Paul Tillich. Translated with a concluding essay by James Luther Adams. University of Chicago Press. 323 pp.

Reader Letters March 1949
by Our Readers
What Kind of Synagogue? TO THE EDITOR OF COMMENTARY: The article by Percival and Paul Goodman on current synagogue construction in the Janu- ary issue was of particular interest to me.

April, 1949Back to Top
Segregation in Housing
by Our Readers
To the Editor: Charles Abrams' article “The Segregation Threat in Housing,” in the February COMMENTARY, points up a problem that has serious possibilities.

The Double Gift
by Our Readers
To the Editor: As a couple of other cranks may have written you, the lines which Professor Bloom attributes, in his interesting article “Dictator of the Lodz Ghetto,” to “the sensitive Hasidic poet S.

From the Jewish Music Council
by Our Readers
To the Editor: In Dr. Kurt List's article in the February issue of your magazine, “A Year of Jewish Music,” he makes certain statements about the music section of the National Jewish Welfare Board (I assume he means the National Jewish Music Council sponsored by the National Jewish Welfare Board) which are likely to convey erroneous impressions about the National Jewish Music Council.

American Falashas?
by Our Readers
To the Editor: Congratulations upon the publication of Dr. Wolf Leslau's exciting account of his expedition into Ethiopia and his contact with the Falashas.

Yiddish, But Is It Art?
by Our Readers
To the Editor: I read Heinz Politzer's article “Starring Schwartz and Skulnik” (COMMENTARY, January 1949), while still under the impact of my encounter with New York's Yiddish theater.

Does Democracy Need Nazi Partners?
The Dangerous Course of Our German Reconstruction

by Nicolas Clarion
After many months in which the “German problem” seemed to be synonymous with the Berlin air-lift, there has been a resurgence of a deeper interest and concern.

The Yeshiva Comes to Westchester:
The Legalistic Hedges of Suburbia

by Herrymon Maurer
From the wreckage of Eastern Europe, with little intact but a two-thousand-year-old tradition, the Yeshiva of Nitra came to America.

Jewish Life in the Russian Satellites:
The Prospects for Recovery under Totalitarianism

by Nathan Reich
How do Jews live today in Poland, Rumania, Hungary, and the other Russian satellite countries- and what is the chance for a continuation of Jewish community life there? It has not been easy to piece together any coherent picture out of the disconnected items of news coming from the countries of Eastern Europe, formerly the homes of the most populous Jewish communities in the world.

Broadway and American Integrity:
The Lost Souls that People our Stage

by Alfred Kazin
With the end of the 1948-49 theatrical season close at hand—a year rich in variety if not distinction—Alfred Kazin finds one theme chiefly preoccupying the present-day American theater and its playwrights.

What Price Israel's “Normalcy”?
A Young Nation and its Ideals

by Ernst Simon
The central ideal of Jewish youth in Israel has been, and remains, “normalcy.” Its appeal is obvious: health, vigor, the saving power of earth and air, and constructive work.

Thomas Mann's “Doctor Faustus”:
“Terminal Work” of an Art Form and an Era

by Erich Kahler
Few books have offered such a challenge to America's critics and other readers as Thomas Mann's recently published Doctor Faustus, which marks the climax of one of the great literary careers of our age—a career possibly as important and instructive as the works of art it produced.

Self-Portrait of a 17th-Century Housewife:
The Memoirs of Glückel of Hameln

by David Scheinert
The Memoms of Glückel of Hameln is one of the few personal documents bearing on Jewish life before the x9th century that has come down to us; as a self-portrait of a Jewish matron (t is doubly rare.

The Badge
A Story

by Robert Misrahi
I wish I had a new suit to sew it on. This one's all shabby and the patch on the right-hand pocket stands out too much. Still it is so very bright, their eyes will fasten on it and they won't look at anything else. All the same, I must dress carefully.

From the American Scene: My Grandmother Had Yichus
by May Tabak
Harkavy's Yiddish dictionary defines Yichus as “descent, lineage, noble descent; genealogy, pedigree; pride.” But as the reader of this informal study will discover, these English terms give us only the bare bones of that heritage of scholarly ancestry which to Jews of the old school was the only true hall-mark of aristocracy.

Cedars of Lebanon: Moses the Prophet
by Henry George
Henry George is most generally known as the author of Progress and Poverty and the founder of the “Single Tax” movement.

On the Horizon: Opening Game in Zion
by William Schack
This department—usually described as a place for reports on cultural and social trends—this month extends its boundaries to include William Schack's description of what was perhaps the first Palestinian baseball game; and an article by Eric Werner on Jewish liturgical music.

On the Horizon: The True Source of Jewish Music
by Eric Werner
This department—usually described as a place for reports on cultural and social trends—this month extends its boundaries to include WilLiam Schack's description of what was perhaps the first Palestinian baseball game; and an article by Eric Werner on Jewish liturgical music.

The Study of Man: New Paths in American Jewish History
by Oscar Handlin
The present increased interest among social scientists in the relations of immigrant groups to a changing American society, and the current desire of Jews to have a record of their experience on the American scene, would seem to create a favorable climate for writing history about American Jews.

Today's the Day
by Earl Hendler
Today's the day when we have come together, the lonely flute, the drum greeting us, wooden, oracular. But the theme starts and ends on the particular, the lonely theme that's thinking aloud, allergic to this general crowd that closes in with scrape of chairs to kill the music.

Civilization on Trial, by Arnold J. Toynbee
by L. Namier
Toynbee's Perspective Civilization on Trial. by Arnold J. Toynbee. Oxford University Press. 263 pp. $3.50.   “By ‘the age in which we are living’ I mean the last five or six thousand years within which mankind, after having been human for at least six hundred thousand years before that, attained the modest level of social and moral achievement that we call ‘civilization.’” This sentence supplies the key to Dr.

Roads to Zion: Four Centuries of Travelers' Reports; In the Heart of the Seas, by S. Y. Agnon; Under the Fig Tree, by Yitzhak Sh
by Isaac Rosenfeld
Unease in Zion Roads to Zion: Four Centuries of Travelers' Reports. Translated by I. M. Lask and Edited by Kurt Wilhelm. Schocken Books.

Eimi, by E. E. Cummings
by Raymond Rosenthal
Seeing Not Believing Eimi. By E. E. Cummings. William Sloane Associates. 432 pp. $5.00.   The reissure of Eimi raises an interesting question: why was E.

Among the Nations, edited by Ludwig Lewisohn
by Irving Sanes
The Mysterious Alien Among the Nations. Edited by Ludwig Lewisohn. Farrar, Straus. 288 pp. $3.00.   Ludwig Lewisohn, in his introduction to Among the Nations, describes the continuous struggle of the Jew to maintain the essence of Judaism as the “central moral fact of Western history.” And around this act of integrity the Gentile writer, from Chaucer to Thomas Wolfe, has wilfully perpetuated an “evil and baseless myth.” As an antidote, Mr.

Man for Himself, by Erich Fromm
by Lillian Blumberg
Psychoanalysis And Morals Man for Himself. By Erich Fromm. Rinehart. 254 pp. $3.00.   It used to be said that if society were good the individual would be happy.

The Legacy of Sacco and Vanzetti, by G. Louis Joughin and Edmund M. Morgan
by James Rorty
Flowering Legend The Legacy of Sacco and Vanzetti. By G. Louis Joughin and Edmund M. Morgan. Harcourt, Brace. 514 pp. $6.00.   A generation has passed since the state of Massachusetts put to death two Italian immigrants, not because they were criminals, which was never proved and which few people now believe, but because they were anarchists.

Reader Letters April 1949
by Our Readers
Yiddish, But Is It Art? TO THE EDITOR OF COMMENTARY: I read Heinz Politzer's article "Starring Schwartz and Skulnik" (COMMENTARY, Janu- ary 949), while still under the impact of my encounter with New York's Yiddish theater. Since 1938, when I left Europe, I had lost all contact with Jewish art.

May, 1949Back to Top
The Jewish Family
by
To the Editor: The time has come when it seems a little patronizing and beside the point for correspondents to give COMMENTARY a passing pat on the back.

What Can Survive the Melting Pot?
by
[Note: In a letter to the editor published in the January 1949 COMMENTARY, Alvin Johnson, commenting on Robert Pick's “A Refugee Looks at Anti-Semitism Here,” suggested that anti-Semitism in America does not constitute a serious political danger, and that the exclusion of Jews from certain areas of American life (and the corresponding tendency of Jews to keep themselves apart) may be in some ways a blessing, since it tends to perpetuate within the Jewish group intellectual values which might be dissipated if Jews were accepted more readily in American “society.” There followed the exchange of letters between Mr.

Self-Hatred or Self-Criticism?
by
To the Editor: I am grateful to Yehezkel Kaufman for having attempted, in his article “Anti-Semitic Stereotypes in Zionism” [published in the March COMMENTARY], to find a solution to the disturbing problem of Jewish self-criticism—a problem that continues to preoccupy us in spite of the partial success of our national aspirations.

What Can We Do About Fagin?
The Jew-Villain in Western Tradition

by Leslie Fiedler
For the Jew who feels himself to be a full participant in Western culture, it comes always as a new shock to recognize that this culture continues to harbor a mythical image of him that is both insulting and dangerous.

Departure and Arrival:Embarkation to Israel
by Robert
The mass movement of Jews from Europe and their ingathering in Israel goes forward month by month. In these two pieces of personal reportage we are given vivid glimpses of the sight and feel of this extraordinary moment in Jewish history, together with some sense of the emotions it stirs in the hearts of the “diaspora” beholder-who is also part of the story.

Departure and Arrival:Family Reunion in the Land
by Juliette Pary
The mass movement of Jews from Europe and their ingathering in Israel goes forward month by month. In these two pieces of personal reportage we are given vivid glimpses of the sight and feel of this extraordinary moment in Jewish history, together with some sense of the emotions it stirs in the hearts of the “diaspora” beholder-who is also part of the story.

Marx's Prophecy in the Light of History:
Balance Sheet After a Century

by Franz Borkenau
For a century now, the theories of Marxism have been subjected to a many-sided testing in practice such as few other political doctrines have known.

Pleasure Island
by W. Auden
What there is as a surround to our figures          Is very old, very big, Very formidable indeed; The ocean        Stares right past us as though No one here was worth drowning, and the eye, true         Blue all summer, of the sky Would not miss a huddle of huts related        By planks, a dock, a state Of undress and improvised abandon       Upon shadowless sand. To send a cry of protest or a call for        Protection up into all Those dazzling miles, to add, however sincerely,         One's occasional tear To that volume, would be rather silly,       Nor is there one small hill For the hopeful to climb, one tree for the hopeless         To sit under and mope; The coast is a blur and without meaning         The churches and routines Which stopped there and never cared or dared to         Cross over to interfere With this outpost where nothing is wicked       But to be sorry or sick, But one thing unneighborly, work.

Eichmann: Administrator of Extermination:
“The Definitive Solution of the Jewish Problem”

by L. Poliakov
Adolf Eichmann, author of the plan to exterminate the Jews, and the Nazi official responsible for its administration, was and remains a figure of mystery.

Has Judaism Still Power to Speak?
A Religion for an Age of Crisis

by Will Herberg
At a time when men of all faiths or no faith are seeking to understand the old bibles, and to write new ones, what of that people who gave the world the Bible, and who claim and are recognized to have a special genius for the religious? Everywhere the evidence becomes more and more abundant that we are witnessing in our time a religious revival—or at least a revival of interest in religion on the level of ideas, i.e., theology.

Golden Days
A Story

by Eliot Wagner
Jesse squatted in the front room, surrounded by parts of the radio he was trying to repair. He worked rapidly; he was due at the pushcart to relieve his father for breakfast.

Dashiell Hammett's “Private Eye”:
No Loyalty Beyond the Job

by David Bazelon
In the career and writings of Dashiell Hammett, one of the most successful American practitioners of the detective story, David T.

From the American Scene: Fifty Years in the Canadian North
by Raymond Rosenthal
Abe Weisman, now seventy-seven years old and living in Washington Heights, spent most of his life on the Canadian frontier, where he kept store, prospected for gold, and turned his hand to many things, with varying success.

Cedars of Lebanon: Prophets and Prophecy
by Maimonides
Judaism's emphasis on the human nature and human qualities of the prophets was directed against the Christian-pagan notion of a man-God.

On the Horizon: Culture Conference at the Waldorf
by William Barrett
William Barrett here reports on the Cultural and Scientific Conference for World Peace which took place at New York's Waldorf-Astoria Hotel on the weekend of March 25, and about which there has been so much controversy.  _____________   “Was the Conference really Communist-dominated?” a woman of my acquaintance asked.

The Study of Man: Good Stocks and Lesser Breeds
by Edward Saveth
Edward N. Saveth here examines the treatment of American ethnic groups in history and social science textbooks—many in common use in American elementary and high schools—and finds some unhappy facts. _____________   It is scarcely in the nature of an exposé to point out that American legislation on immigration in the past quarter-century, up to and including the recent displaced-persons act, has pandered to the myth of “Nordic superiority.” The wellsprings of mind and spirit which feed this myth we know to be as deep as they are dubious—economic competition, social exclusiveness, anti-Semitism, suspicion of the stranger, brute selfishness—and it is difficult to measure accurately the role of any single factor in fixing the myth in the public and legislative mind.

The God-Seeker, by Sinclair Lewis; Intruder in the Dust, by William Faulkner; The Grand Design, by John Dos Passos
by Nathan Glick
The Novelist as Elder Statesman The God-Seeker. by Sinclair Lewis. Random House. 422 pp. $3.50. Intruder in the Dust. by William Faulkner. Random House. 247 pp.

The Story of the Arab Legion, by John Bagot Glubb
by Robert Weltsch
Glubb's Romantic Arab The Story of the arab Legion. by John Bagot Glubb. London, Hodder and Stoughton. 371 pp. £1/5/—.   Brigadier Glubb—Glubb Pasha, as he is called—is the frustrated Titus of our time.

Passover: Its History and Traditions, by Theodor Herzl Gaster
by David Baumgardt
Why is this Night? Passover: Its History And Traditions. by Theodor Herzl Gaster. Henry Schuman. 102 pp. $2.50.   Dr. Gaster has provided for the general reader an extremely readable book on Passover, packed with information on practically all of its various aspects.

Shalom Means Peace, by Robert St. John
by Nathan Glazer
Cinematic Gloss on History Shalom Means Peace. by Robert St. John. Doubleday. 335 pp. $2.95.   Mr. St. John, a journalist who has written books about Yugoslavia, here covers a few months in the spring and summer of 1948 in Palestine, while warfare and truces alternated.

Judicial Doctrines of Religious Rights in America, by William George Torpey; Separation of Church and State in the United States
by Milton Konvitz
Church and State Judicial Doctrines of Religious Rights in America. by William George Torpey. University of North Carolina Press. 376 pp. $5.00. Separation of Church and State in the United States. by Alvin W.

Ferdinand Lassalle, by David Footman
by Samuel Hurwitz
Prophet of Modern Statism Ferdinand Lassalle. by David Footman. Yale University Press. 251 pp. $3.50.   Ferdinand Lassalle, the son of a Jewish merchant, spent most of his thirty-nine years striving to obliterate this fact.

Reader Letters May 1949
by Our Readers
Self-Hatred or Self-Criticism? TO THE EDITOR OF COMMENTARY: I am grateful to Yehezkel Kaufman for hav- ing attempted, in his article "Anti-Semitic Ster- eotypes in Zionism" [published in the March COMMENTARY], to find a solution to the disturb- ing problem of Jewish self-criticism-a problem that continues to preoccupy us in spite of the partial success of our national aspirations.

June, 1949Back to Top
“Doctor Faustus”
by Our Readers
To the Editor: I want to express to you my great appreciation of your publication of Erich Kahler's beautiful and brilliant article about Doctor Faustus.

Primitive Jewish Historiography
by Our Readers
To the Editor: It was with great pleasure and interest that I read Oscar Handlin's carefully constructed and succinct article “New Paths in American Jewish History,” in the April COMMENTARY.

Christians and Jews
by Our Readers
To the Editor: If more nominal Christians were so truly Christian as Herrymon Maurer, and if, as a result, more Jews became more appreciative of Christianity and Christians, we should be on our way toward mitigating the neuroses which keep the “Jewish problem” the traumatic complex it is.

Change and Fossilization
by Our Readers
To the Editor: An interesting, but rather illusory, interpretation of the development of the Jewish religion is given by Joseph Blau in his letter to the editor, published in the April issue, commenting on Dr.

Marx's Legacy
by Our Readers
To the Editor: Mr. Borkenau's article in the May issue on “Marx's Prophecy in the Light of History” is admirable, but it doesn't sufficiently stress the truly scientific core of Marxian socialism.

Psychoanalysis and Ethics
by Our Readers
To the Editor: In her review of Erich Fromm's Man for Himself, in the April COMMENTARY, Lillian Blumberg . . .

The Myth of the Jew
by Our Readers
To the Editor: Leslie A. Fiedler's article “What Can We Do About Fagin?” presents a lucid study indeed of the basic nature of the Christian myth of the Jew in Western culture. In describing possible lines of action, Mr.

The Economic Test Facing Israel:
A First-Hand Report

by Hal Lehrman
Hal Lehrman's balanced reports from Europe and the Middle East, both during the war and after, have gained him increasing recognition as an observer and analyst of present-day social, economic, and political change and conflict.

Young America Takes Over the Colleges:
The Two Worlds of the School

by Arnold Green
Americans have in recent years added to the inalienable rights to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness the right of every boy and girl to a college education.

The New Anti-Semitism of the Soviet Union:
Its Background and Its Meaning

by Solomon Schwarz
Perhaps the only statement about the USSR that Americans—whether hostile or friendly—have been able to agree on is that “at least you can't deny that the Soviets put an end to anti-Semitism.” In the face of recent plain evidence to the contrary, public opinion has gone from incredulity to bewilderment and confusion.

Portrait of the Mythical Gentile:
One Stereotype Breeds Another

by Wayne Clark
Have Jews, reacting to the attempts of the non-Jewish world to fit them to a stereotype, created in their turn a mythical Gentile, composed of a whole host of quite unsubstantiated generalizations? Wayne Clark, speaking from personal experience, thinks so, and here lists some of the presumed Gentile traits which she believes all too many Jews accept as representing reality.  _____________   During the past five years we have seen the most rapid construction of a literary myth since the carpentry of the Byronic hero.

Teach Us to Mark This, God
by Franz Werfel
Teach Us to Mark This, God (“Lehrs uns ZU merken Gott”) was published in German, as one of a group, “Elf neue Gedichte,” in the magazine Mass und Wert, July-August 1938.

The French Intellectual Merry-Go-Round:
Right, Left, Up and Down

by Sherry Mangan
In 1934, a showing of Shakespeare's Coriolanus in Paris resulted in a riot and street battle between the Right and Left.

The Re-Creation of Hebrew:
A “Dead Language” Lives Again

by Ralph Weiman
The revival of modem Hebrew—the language of the new state of Israel—has been a continuing source of amazement to linguists and laymen alike.

The Happy One
A Story

by Edgar Rosenberg
The nine-year-old emigrant Felix Freudenreich copied with patience and precision a half-length portrait of Henri Dunant from an otherwise useless Red Cross leaflet which he had picked up at one of the stops on his journey a week earlier.

No More than Human:
Four Reflections on Judaism

by Jacob Sloan
The revival of interest in religious themes and issues among intellectuals is one of the phenomena of our time. Here Jacob Sloan, poet and translator of poetry and prose from Hebrew and Yiddish, contributes a modem commentary on some traditional Jewish ideas.  _____________   I Israel is the track of Cod in the desert of oblivion—Abraham Joshua Heschel I am writing this the evening after the Day of Atonement, and I hope that I shall not be thought facetious when I say that Professor Heschel's words leave me with a sense of combined guilt and indifference.

From the American Scene: West Bronx: Food, Shelter, Clothing
by Ruth Glazer
Ruth Glazer's informal sociological exploration, “The Jewish Delicatessen” (Commentary, March 1946), was one of the earliest of a number of studies of types and institutions in American Jewish life that have appeared in this department.

Cedars of Lebanon: The Nag
by Mendele
Mendele Mocher Sforim (“Mendele the Bookseller”) was the pen name of Shalom Jacob Abramovitch, who is commonly regarded as the father of modem Yiddish literature.

On the Horizon: The Opportunity of the Jewish Museum
by Heinz Politzer
Historically, the Jew is a comparative latecomer to the world of art, and encouragement of art by the organized Jewish community is an even more recent phenomenon.

The Study of Man: Prophets, Priests, and Social Scientists
by Albert Salomon
In the past fifty years, sociology has made a strong and increasingly successful bid for recognition as a scientific discipline alone capable of arriving at the truth concerning all aspects of human life, including religion.

Three Books by Morris R. Cohen
by Israel Knox
Odyssey of a Jewish Sage A Dreamer's Journey. by Morris R. Cohen. Beacon Press. 318 pp. $4.00. The Meaning of Human History. by Morris R.

Guard of Honor, by James Gould Cozzens
by George Becker
Men at War Guard of Honor. by James Gould Cozzens. Harcourt, Brace. 631 pp. $3.50.   The slice of life or the cross-section has been used by novelists to give a balanced and objective view of a world too often subject to distortion because of faulty vision or special pleading.

The Old Testament in English, a New Translation, by Ronald Knox
by David Daiches
Knox's Old Testament The Old Testament in English. A New Translation. by Ronald Knox. Volume one. Sheed and Ward. 739 pp. $7.00.   This is the first volume of Monsignor Knox's translation of the Old Testament from the Vulgate Latin, made at the request of Cardinal Hinsley and the English hierarchy.

From Day to Day, by Odd Nansen; Psychologie des Lebens im Konzentrationslager Theresienstadt, by Emil Utitz
by Franz Hoellering
Survival of Humanity From Day to Day. by Odd Nansen. Putnam. 485 pp. $5.00. Psychologie Des Lebens Im Konzen-Trationslager Theresienstadt. By Emil Utitz. Vienna, Sexl Verlag.

The Melodramatists, by Howard Nemerov
by Isa Kapp
Book Reviews—A Lively Irreverence The Melodramatists. by Howard Nemerov. Random House. 338 pp. $3.00.   At a time when the most trivial occasions seem to call forth cataclysmic pronouncements on our atrophied values, perished glories, and unusable traditions, Howard Nemerov takes the position that, in the midst of the fragmentary and the dissonant, it is possible to preserve one's identity and make a productive start.

Reader Letters June 1949
by Our Readers
The Myth of the Jew TO THE EDITOR OF COMMENTARY: Leslie A. Fiedler's article 'What Can We Do About Fagin?" presents a lucid study in- deed of the basic nature of the Christian myth of the Jew in Western culture. In describing possible lines of action, Mr.

July, 1949Back to Top
Commentary's Influence
by Our Readers
To the Editor: On a recent trip to San Francisco, where I had gone to argue for a non-discrimination ordinance to be applicable to urban redevelopment projects, I was surprised to find how effective COMMENTARY's was and how widely read in influential quarters. On several previous occasions when the racial issue was brought up—New York, Chicago, and Philadelphia—articles in COMMENTARY's were mentioned too.

A Bronxite Protests
by Our Readers
To the Editor: Apropos of the article “West Bronx: Food, Shelter, Clothing,” published in the June COMMENTARY: The average housewife doesn't indulge in splurges when she has a few friends in for the evening.

Who Is “Native Stock”?
by Our Readers
To the Editor: After reading Edward Saveth's article on racist doctrine in American school textbooks [ “Good Stocks and Lesser Breeds,” in the May COMMENTARY], I was reminded of Mark Twain's dictum, “It's better not to know so much than to know so many things that aren't so.” Personally, I was fortunate in escaping a great deal of elementary education.

The Hebrew Alphabet
by Our Readers
To the Editor: Ralph Weiman's article, “The Re-Creation of Hebrew,” in the June COMMENTARY, raises a mechanical problem of high cultural importance.

American Rabbis and Religion
by Our Readers
To the Editor: It was with great interest that I read the article by Will Herberg in the May COMMENTARY. The way Mr.

The Communist:
His Mentality and His Morals

by Harold Rosenberg
Harold Rosenberg here draws together in a portrait what we have learned about the Bolshevik personality in thought and action in the three decades since the Russian Revolution, leaning particularly on two recent biographies of Lenin: Lenin by David Shub (Doubleday) and Three Who Made a Revolution by Bertram Wolfe (Dial).  _____________ Much I prize the doubt .

The Israelis Learn to Govern Themselves:
Politics and Politicians in the New State

by Hal Lehrman
This analysis of the emerging pattern of Israel's political institutions is the second of three articles which HAL LEHRMAN is writing for this magazine from Tel Aviv.

The Intellectuals and the Jewish Community:
The Hope for Our Heritage in America

by Elliot Cohen
This article draws largely on two addresses on the perspective for the creative continuance of the Jewish heritage in America: one given on the first anniversary of the Jewish Museum of the Jewish Theological Seminary in New York; the other at Yale University on the occasion of the celebration of the twenty-fifth anniversary of the B'nai B'rith Hillel Foundations in American universities.

Uncle Remus and the Malevolent Rabbit:
Takes a Limber-Toe Gemmun fer ter Jump Jim Crow

by Bernard Wolfe
For generations, American children and adults have chuckled over the adventures of Uncle Remus's Brer Rabbit. Bernard Wolfe here suggests that Uncle Remus's loyal white readers may not, after all, have properly understood that the joke was on them: at the heart of the merry fables was the half-suppressed revenge of a resentful minority.

Mermaid
A Story

by Nathan Halper
When Cellini was about five his father chanced to see a creature like a lizard playing in the middle of the fire.

Commencement
by Milton Kaplan
Anointed by benediction and released, They sway out slowly to recessional, And buoyant in the music and their loose Symbolic gowns, they float on waves of warm Applause and merge into the waiting crowd. Caught by the fitful currents of farewell, They swirl in random drifts, their restless hands Stretched out elastically for outstretched hands, Clinging with all their memory to friends Once-strangers, who loom darkly into strangers Once-friends; twining and intertwining hands And ears and eyes in fluid arabesque Of parting, grasping tentacles of words With frightened suction-wish, unwinding, winding Their memories until the campus heaves With undulating longing, and they spin Around in whirlpools of uncertainty, And break centrifugally from contact, whirl And come to rest, their severed tentacles Writhing with heartless life, and weak with wound, They yield to each successive wave, and cross The final line of foam-indented Past To gasp upon the empty shore of loss. _____________  

The Myth of the Parasitic Middleman:
“Productive” and “Unproductive” Labor

by Abba Lerner
At Least since the 18th century, social discontent has tended to focus on the figure of The Middleman, who is conceived to be a kind of parasite earning his living in some obscure way at the expense of the “productive” elements of society.

Chagall: On a Retrospective Exhibit
by Allen Kanfer
This is the testimony in his hand To Song of Songs: my bride say after me, “Bone of my bone, flesh of my flesh,” my love, And let the fiddlers skip across the roofs To celebrate the wedding, fiddling as They go. Come forth, good villagers, and stand Before the canopy.

The Vindictive and the Merciful:
God of Wrath and God of Love

by Milton Himmelfarb
It is a time-honored custom to counterpose the Christian “God of Love” and the Jewish “God of Wrath.” Does this sharp contrast have any valid relation to the realities of the two religions in doctrine and practice? _____________   I used to think I was fooling my father, but now I suspect that he knew all along and did not want to make an issue of it.

The Irrepressible Herr Schacht:
Hitler's Adviser Stages a Comeback

by Alfred Werner
Only the other day a high official of the American Military Government in Germany announced that there no longer exists any reason why Hjalmar Schacht, Hider's minister of finance, should not be appointed an official of the West German government.

From the American Scene: Revolt of the Reefer-Makers
by S. Blumenson
S. L. Blumenson here tells from personal memory the story of a strike that played an important part in the revolt against the sweatshop and brought trade unionism for the first time to the American garment industry.

Cedars of Lebanon: Men and Women
by Our Readers
The Aggadah, which is made up stories, dialogues, homilies, sayings, proverbs, fables, and riddles scattered through the Mishna and the Jerusalem and Babylonian Talmuds (as well as the Masechtot, Mechilta, Sifra, Sifrei, Tosefta, Midrash Rabba, Midrash Tanchuma, Midrash Shmuel, Sefer Ha-Yetzira, Yalkut Shimon, etc.), was the principal form taken by the popular creativity of the Jewish people for several hundred years, flowering chiefly in the beginning of the Christian era.

On the Horizon: Israeli Music in America
by Peter Gradenwitz
Many American Jews look for strong and immediate enrichment of artistic endeavor here by Israeli culture; others are somewhat sceptical.

The Study of Man:The Idea of “Race” Dies Hard:

by Melvin Tumin
The concept of “race,” with its implications of superiority and inferiority, has been the target of attack by liberal social scientists for three decades, and the battle has gone on with renewed vigor since Hitler.

Education in a Divided World, by James Bryant Conant
by Diana Trilling
Education for Common Men Education in a Divided World. By James Bryant Conant. Harvard University Press. 249 pp. $3.00.   While it is not at all difficult to understand what Mr.

Go Fight City Hall, by Ethel Rosenberg
by Paul Goodman
Towards Urban Pastoral Go Fight City Hall. By Ethel Rosenberg, Simon and Schuster. 255 pp. $2.50.   There is a distressing discrepancy in this first book between the presented surface and the author's instinct for reality, everywhere underlying.

The Diaries of Franz Kafka; Franz Kafkas Glauben und Lehre, by Max Brod; and Franz Kafka: An Interpretation, by Herbert Tauber
by Heinz Politzer
Messenger of the King The Diaries of Franz Kafka. Edited by Max Brod. Schocken Books. 2 vols. $3.75 each. Franz Kafkas Glauben Und Lehre (Franz Kafka's). By Max Brod. Winterthur, Mondial-Verlag.

The American Political Tradition, by Richard Hofstadter
by Oscar Handlin
America's Political Tradition The American Political Tradition and the Men who Made it. By Richard Hofstadter. Knopf. 378 pp. $4.00.   For the last quarter-century and more, a dull dead hand has rested over the writing of American political history.

Faith and History, by Reinhold Niebuhr; and Meaning in History, by Karl Lowith
by Irving Kristol
The Slaughter-Bench of History Faith and History. By Reinhold Niebuhr. Scribners. 257 pp . . $3.50. Meaning in History. By Karl Löwith. University of Chicago Press.

Whisper My Name, by Burke Davis; and In the Land of Jim Crow, by Ray Sprigle
by Anatole Broyard
Frozen Statues Whisper My Name. By Burke Davis. Rinehart. 282 pp. $2.75. In The Land of Jim Crow. By Ray Sprigle. Simon and Schuster. 215 pp.

Reader Letters July 1949
by Our Readers
TO THE EDITOR OF COMMENTARY: It was with great interest that I read the article by Will Herberg in the May COM- MENTARY.

August, 1949Back to Top
No Whitewash Brush
by Our Readers
To the Editor: In the process of cleaning up my desk, I saw a reprint from COMMENTARY (“Good Stocks and Lesser Breeds”) that I have been passing on to some of my friends and it occurred to me that it was about time that I wrote to thank you for the contribution that COMMENTARY has made to me and to American intellectual life. COMMENTARY is no whitewash brush.

Jewish Labor and Management
by Our Readers
To The Editor: You provoke me to most unprofessional conduct—the writing of a letter to the editor. I do so with a sense of pleasant irritation, the urticant being a well established reluctance to undertake the effort of writing, the counter-irritant being an inner compulsion to express my appreciation of and gratitude for the superb job of editing and writing exemplified by the July issue of COMMENTARY. As an editor in my own small right, I doubt that there is a sufficient audience of readers ready to invest the mental and spiritual labor required by Elliot Cohen's essay, “The Intellectuals and the Jewish Community,” and perhaps, also, by Mr.

Sociologists and Religion
by Our Readers
To The Editor: Though I am not a sociologist myself and my field of study is somewhat remote from sociology, I have been most deeply impressed by Albert Salomon's article “Prophets, Priests, and Social Scientists,” published in the June COMMENTARY.

Questioning Liberal Assumptions
by Our Readers
To The Editor: I have been reading COMMENTARY for the past two years and consider it the most stimulating monthly in America.

Not Bronx, but America
by Our Readers
To The Editor: The honesty and charm of Ruth Glazer's observations of life in the West Bronx [in the June COMMENTARY] have surely delighted many readers.

Morris Cohen as Talmid Chacham
by Our Readers
To The Editor: Israel Knox, in reviewing Morris Cohen's diary-autobiography A Dreamer's Journey (in the June COMMENTARY), seems to be drawing a slightly far-fetched and more than slightly irrelevant analogy throughout between Morris Cohen and the talmid chacham of Jewish tradition.

On the Agenda: Death:
A Document of the Jewish Resistance

by Our Readers
The document here printed has a special place in the treasury of literature devoted to Jewish resistance to the Nazis; it is the record of a meeting of the executive committee of the Bialystok branch of the Hechalutz (Palestinian pioneers) movement in Bialystok, held February 27, 1943.

Religion By Fiat in Israel:
Ben Gurion Tacks Around the Church-State Issue

by Hal Lehrman
In the history of the West, few problems have been of greater importance than that of the relations between church and state.

The Knickerbocker Case:
A Report on the Current Crusade

by Morris Freedman
The “Knickerbocker Case,” in which a professor at New York's City College has been accused of anti-Semitism, has been in the news, off and on, for a long time; students have walked out of their classrooms, charges and countercharges by various individuals and organizations have filled the press—and yet the complex facts of the case are by no means well known, even to some of those most passionately committed.

The Key to Kafka:
What is His True Significance?

by Hermann Goldschmidt
Though Franz Kafka is now recognized as one of the greatest writers of our century, enthusiasm for his work is still confined to relatively restricted circles.

The Schooling of David Dubinsky:
A Democratic Labor Leader in the Making

by Waclaw Solski
David Dubinsky, long-time president of the International Ladies Garment Workers Union, has played a unique role in the American labor movement.

The Stranger and the Victim:
The Two Jewish Stereotypes of American Fiction

by Irving Howe
Irving Howe here traces the changing outlines of the figure of the Jew as he has appeared in American fiction over the past fifty years, and suggests, on the basis of copious documentation, how limited and repetitious have been the patterns, and how inadequate the art with which writers both Jewish and non-Jewish have dealt with Jewish experience and personality on the American scene.

Big Crash Out West
by Peter Viereck
They call streets “boulevards” and build them huge Where grandpa's ox-cart could not budge; Here's room for elbows, land of the brave fourth gears. Speed is the bridge for spanning loneliness. Until.                     This is the western way to die. And when the car stops burning, thar he'll lie, Surrounded by the brothers of his lodge. O Crash for whom their boredoms cry, Is there—in your sensuous instant—time to guess At what's unspent, at what's unsaved, unsensuous years Never hot with doubt nor faith nor reverence for tears? _____________  

This Ancient Cloud
a Story

by Michael Seide
The story published here is from a novel in progress tentatively entitled The Man in the Middle. _____________   At 14th Street a few of the nickel-nursers fled, but a fresh bunch rushed in, including a hefty woman high in her descending years who tried to squeeze in next to Joe.

The Look
by Babette Deutsch
Beneath the gay bandeau the shaven head Showed. The eyes, huger in the wasted face, Wandered like wild things dulled by narrow pacing. The hand was tethered to a pain, that fed On a spreading horror.

Judeo-European Literary Miscellany:
A Report on Post-War Cultural Activity

by David Scheinert
This article was translated from the French by Martin Greenberg. _____________   A Yiddish puppet show, “Hakl-Bakl,” is much talked about in Paris.

From the American Scene: Brownsville's Age of Learning
by Samuel Tenenbaum
Samuel Tenenbaum here sets down his memories of the Brownsville section of Brooklyn in an era when life there—he would insist—was better.  _____________   Brownsville, you should know, was originally settled by the overflow of people that spilled out of the tenements and slums of New York's East Side.

Cedars of Lebanon: Some Yiddish Proverbs
by Our Readers
A proverb is generally said to be a concentrate of folklore and folk-sagacity, a statement earthy, popular, and with an immediately felt point.

On the Horizon: Training Film for Democrats
by Richard Clurman
In this month's “On the Horizon,” devoted to shorter articles on the cultural scene, RICHARD M. CLURMAN discusses the movie “Home of the Brave,” and NICOLAS CLARION reports on a recent French literary phenomenon.

On the Horizon: Messiah of Lettrisme
by Nicolas Clarion
In this month's “On the Horizon,” devoted to shorter articles on the cultural scene, RICHARD M. CLURMAN discusses the movie “Home of the Brave,” and NICOLAS CLARION reports on a recent French literary phenomenon.

The Study of Man: How Many Jews in America?
by Sophia Robison
That there are substantial numbers of Jews in America seems to be an established fact; yet just how many there are, is a subject about which the experts fall out among themselves.

The Road Between, by James T. Farrell
by Wallace Markfield
Naturalist in Extremis The Road Between. by James T. Farrell. Vanguard Press. 463 pp. $3.50.   In the minds of so many intellectuals who have passed thirty, James T.

American Freedom and Catholic Power, by Paul Blanshard
by Will Herberg
The Church and American Politics American Freedom And Catholic Power. by Paul Blanshard. The Beacon Press. $3.50.   “Catholic power” is certainly a problem for American democracy.

The Essence of Judaism, by Leo Baeck
by David Baumgardt
The Judaism of Rabbi Baeck The Essence of Judaism. by Leo Baeck. Revised Edition. Schocken Books. 288 pp. $4.00.   In studying great lives of the past, and in personal contacts with some men of genius of our time, I have encountered those who carry a heavy burden of moral responsibility, of intellectual or artistic subtlety, and who carry this burden often with difficulty and pain; but there seemed to me not too much space left for what can specifically be called dignity.

Nausea, by Jean-Paul Sartre
by Seymour Krim
The Sartre State of Mind Nausea. by Jean-Paul Sartre. Translated by Lloyd Alexander. New Directions. 238 pages. $2.50.   This was Sartre's first “novel”—the first spurt of this Niagara Falls of letters.

In the American Grain, by William Carlos Williams; and The Movement to Americanize the Immigrant, by Edward George Hartmann
by Daniel Boorstin
The Quest for The American In The American Grain. by William Carlos Williams. New Directions. 235 pp. $1.50. The Movement to Americanize The Immigrant. by Edward George Hartmann.

Essays in Jewish Biography, by Alexander Marx
by Milton Himmelfarb
Jewish Scholarship and Scholars Essays In Jewish Biography. by Alexander Marx. Philadelphia, Jewish Publication Society of America. 298 pp. $3.00.   The first four Jewish scholars whose lives and works are described in this collection of popular essays flourished in the Middle Ages; the remaining eight were born in the 19th century, and one, Max L.

The Social Politics of FEPC, by Louis Coleridge Kesselman; All Manner of Men, by Malcolm Ross; and America Divided, by Arnold an
by Samuel Flowerman
Books on Race Relations The Social Politics of FEPC. by Louis Coleridge Kesselman. The University of North Carolina Press. 253 pp. $3.50. All Manner of Men. by Malcolm Ross. Reynal and Hitchcock.

Reader Letters August 1949
by Our Readers
TO THE EDITOR OF COMMENTARY: Israel Knox, in reviewing Morris Cohen's diary-autobiography A Dreamer's Journey (in the June COMMENTARY), seems to be drawing a slightly far-fetched and more than slightly irrelevant analogy throughout between Morris Cohen and the talmid chacham of Jewish tra- dition.

September, 1949Back to Top
Hebrew A Barrier?
by Our Readers
To the Editor: I have read with great interest Ralph Weiman's admirable article “The Re-Creation of Hebrew” in the June COMMENTARY and fully agree with his main thesis that the restoration and adaptation of an ancient language in the short time in which it has been accomplished in Palestine is a remarkable achievement.

Views on Middlemen
by Our Readers
To the Editor: Since the beginning of settled communities, or even earlier, the functions of the merchant or trader have been tangled with all manner of real problems.

The Jewish Writer and the English Literary Tradition: A Symposium: Part I
by Louis Kronenberger
In an article in the May number of COMMENTARY, Leslie A. Fiedler raised the question of the Jew's relation as writer and reader to a literary tradition which from Chaucer to T.

A Plea for Religious Freedom in Israel:
The American Experience Can Serve as a Guide

by Milton Konvitz
In the August issue of COMMENTARY, Hal Lehrman reported from Tel Aviv on the controversy taking place in Israel over the difficult question of religion and the state.

Why Democracy Is Losing in Germany:
Behind the Recent Elections

by A. L.
Today, four years after the end of World War II, one can get general agreement that the denazification policy of the Western powers, conceived as the first step toward democratizing Germany, has proved a dismal failure.

What Kind of Liberal Are You?:
A Classification of the Species

by Robert Bendiner
It is by now an open secret that in American politics the word “liberal” has come to describe birds of amazingly different feathers.

Monuments
by Earl Hendler
Through my pained eyes there float the flickering lights of dark, gray parks wherein the statues soar and labor, man and horse, to sculptured heights. There, cannons' mouths, wide open in a roar, command a green and consecrated soil; and statesmen's platitudes dug into stone commemorate some old thief's civic toil. Only the church bell, rattling like a bone flung down from high, still offers those an alm who seek the sanctuary of the bench and sit revering nothing in their calm but bread, and thirst that drinking fountains quench; these sources stand, the poor's emoluments, crouching and low, these dull, dark monuments. _____________  

The Curious History of the Six-Pointed Star:
How the “Magen David” Became the Jewish Symbol

by Gershom Scholem
The six-pointed Shield of David, now inscribed on the flag of Israel, is universally accepted as the Jewish symbol par excellence; and it is commonly assumed that the Magen David's special significance reaches back to remote antiquity, and enshrines some deep, traditionally hallowed, religious or historical meaning.

The Dream Life of the New Woman:
As Mirrored in Current “Historical” Heroines

by David Bazelon
The enormous success of the popular historical novel, in the Forever Amber vein, with their sexually rampaging heroines, is one of the most intriguing facts of American popular culture.

A Cup of Tea
A Story

by Julius Horwitz
The little girl stretched herself out alongside the man and said, “Hello Mister.” He said “Hello” and wondered what would happen next.

The U.A.W. Fights Race Prejudice:
Case History on the Industrial Front

by Irving Howe
To those who have followed the history of any one of the various state FEPC laws, it may have been something of a surprise to see the number of complaints lodged against trade unions for discriminatory practices.

From the American Scene: By the Waters of the Grand Concourse
by Isa Kapp
The outward appearance and cultural artifacts of the West Bronx were described by Ruth Glazer in “West Bronx: Food, Shelter, and Clothing,” in the June COMMENTARY.

Cedars of Lebanon: The World to Come and the Love of God
by Maimonides
These two chapters, translated from the Hebrew by Shlomo Katz, are from the concluding section of the first book of Maimonides' Mishneh Torah, written in 1180, ten years before his better known Guide to the Perplexed.

On the Horizon: London 1949: Worm's Eye View
by Harold Orlansky
Harold Orlansky has been in England for the past year on a Social Science Research Council fellowship, studying the establishment of a new English town.

On the Horizon: The Art of Yankel Adler
by Alfred Werner
Harold Orlansky has been in England for the past year on a Social Science Research Council fellowship, studying the establishment of a new English town.

A Song of Degrees
by Howard Nemerov
Though the road lead nowhere I have followed the road In its blind turnings, its descents And the long levels where the emptiness     ahead Is inescapably seen. I have cried for justice, I have cried For mercy, now I desire neither. A man may grow strong in his wandering, His foot as strong as a wheel Turning the endless road. Foot and hand hardened to horn, Nose but a hook of bone, eyes Not liquid now but stone—I To myself violent, fiercely exult In Zion everywhere. _____________  

The Study of Man: The New Anthropology and Its Ambitions
by Robert Endleman
Anthropology, a discipline until recently limited to primitive peoples on the periphery of modem civilization, has recently excited some attention by researches and pronouncements indicating an ambition, not merely to study the great centers of civilization, but to act as an authoritative scientific guide on such major problems as international relations, war and peace, and the remaking of Germany and Japan.

Nineteen Eighty-Four, by George Orwell
by Martin Greenberg
Thirty-Five Years From Now Nineteen Eighty-Four. by George Orwell. Harcourt, Brace. 314 pp. $3.00.   “Do you begin to see, then, what kind of world we are creating?” his inquisitor asks Winston Smith, the hero of this novel and a citizen of Oceania, one of the three totalitarian superstates into which the world has been divided, whose political system is called Ingsoc (English Socialism).

This Was America, ed. by Oscar Handlin
by Robert Davis
The Missing American Self This was America. by Oscar Handlin. 602 pp. Cambridge, Harvard University Press. $6.00.   Because of their broad similarity, it is easiest to suggest the particular emphasis of This Was America by contrasting it with Henry Steele Commager's America in Perspective, published in 1947.

The Music of Israel, by Peter Gradenwitz
by Kurt List
On Musical Jewishness The Music of Israel. By Peter Gradenwitz. W. W. Norton. 334 pp. $5.00.   For a number of years the Jewish musical scene has been vexed by an unhappy tendency to confuse Jewish music with music composed by Jews.

Judaism: A Way of Life, by Samuel S. Cohon
by Emil Fackenheim
Evasion Through Metaphor Judaism: A Way of Life. by Samuel S. Cohon. Cincinnati, Union of American Hebrew Congregations. 448 pp. $2.75.   That the scarcity and meagerness of Jewish theological thinking is a disgrace to American Judaism is a point which need not be argued.

A Treasury of Brooklyn, ed. by Ellen, Murphy, and Weld
by William Poster
The Shock of Non-Recognition A Treasury of Brooklyn. by Mary Ellen and Mark Murphy and Ralph Foster Weld. William Sloane Associates. 435 pp.

Pilgrims in a New Land, by Lee M. Friedman
by Marvin Meyers
Pilgrim's Progress Pilgrims in a New Land. By Lee M. Friedman. The Jewish Publication Society of America. 471 pp. $4.00.   Heroes have their authorized biographies, regiments their official histories, villages their antiquarian collections—and shall the American Jews not have a book? Lee M.

Arabs, Oil, and History, by Kermit Roosevelt; and In Search of a Future, by Maurice Hindus
by Joel Carmichael
Middle East Echoes Arabs, Oil, and History. by Kermit Roosevelt. Harper. 371 pp. $3.50. In Search of a Future. by Maurice Hindus. Doubleday. 270 pp. $3.00.   Both these books are calculated to provide a light, handy, and comprehensive guidebook to the Middle East for an American public almost wholly ignorant of anything but its geographic location.

Reader Letters September 1949
by Our Readers
Views on Middlemen TO THE EDITOR OF COMMENTARY: Since the beginning of settled communities, or even earlier, the functions of the merchant or trader have been tangled with all manner of real problems.

October, 1949Back to Top
Another View
by Our Readers
To the Editor: I have read with considerable interest Morris Freedman's discussion of the Knickerbocker case. Most of the published accounts of this case have been so intensely ex parte and so distorted by emotional partisanship that COMMENTARY has rendered a real service in presenting this temperate and unbiased report.

Mr. Freedman Replies
by Our Readers
To The Editor: There are a few points in Rabbi Zuckerman's letter which call for comment. The rest, while it is sometimes interesting, is largely irrelevant to my article, except in the nature of heckling footnotes—taking issue with an adverb, objecting to the “tone,” and so on.

The Knickerbocker Case
by Our Readers
To the Editor: “The Knickerbocker Case: A Report on the Current Crusade,” by Morris Freedman, in the August issue of COMMENTARY, is a curious medley of fact and fancy.

A Dialogue of Two Histories:
“Jewish Contributions to America” in a New Light

by Daniel Boorstin
American Jewish thinkers, concerned with demonstrating Jewish contributions to America, have stressed likenesses and identities: culture-bearers, like blood donors, presumably must be of the same “type.” Daniel Boorstin here presents the provocative thesis that the happiest and most fruitful marriages may well be those of differing, contrasting “cultural personalities.”  _____________   Apologists of Judaism in recent years, in a frenetic search for identities, have dulled their vision of what is distinctive in either the Jewish or the American experience.

Summoning God
by Ralph Gordon
In the light air sanctified of Sabbath Day, I stand beside my father with a book, Hearing the elders industriously pray, Eyes on the page, but hazarding a look; And watch them raise their beards majestically, Until my father taps a soft rebuke Upon the page, but look again, and see Their draped heads rising to the holy sign, And feel the hush, and tremble suddenly As the air breaks, and the roof roars divine With thunder of their congregated voice, And the sound smites, and makes a splendor shine Upon the mind, like God; and I rejoice To see how men can summon God by choice. _____________  

Gathering Storm in U.S.-Israeli Relations:
The Issues Behind the Conflict

by Hal Lehrman
Formally, the decision as to the shape of the final settlement between Israel and the Arab states is once again in the hands of the United Nations and its Palestine Conciliation Commission.

Academic Integrity and Academic Freedom:
How to Deal with the Fellow-Travelling Professor

by Sidney Hook
Sidney Hook, philosopher and educator, here offers his proposal for meeting one of the most complex and crucial problems facing our schools today—how check the spread of totalitarian organizations via fellow-travelling teachers, without undermining academic freedom? _____________   The current discussion of the question whether members of the Communist party should be permitted to teach in our schools and colleges has been conducted in such a way that it has eclipsed much more important problems concerning the character and direction of American education.

American Zionism at an Impasse:
A Movement in Search of a Program

by Arthur Hertzberg
The question, “What next for American Zionists, now that Israel is established?” has been a central topic in organized Jewish life for many months now.

From Little Nemo to Li'l Abner:
Comic Strips as Present-Day American Folklore

by Heinz Politzer
The comic strip—which began its career as a circulation builder for turn-of-the-century newspapers—is now an omnipresent element in our massive American popular culture, and has lately been the subject of much angry controversy.

The Shooting on the Moehlstrasse:
Is It Nazi Anti-Semitism All Over Again?

by Norbert Muhlen
There is a widespread and certainly understandable apprehension at the possibility of a resurgence of Nazi anti-Semitism in Germany. And when the recent report of a clash between Jewish DP's and German police in Munich made the front pages of the world's press, these fears were vigorously stimulated.

The Jewish Writer and the English Literary Tradition: A Symposium-Part II
by James Grossman
The editors of COMMENTARY asked twenty writers to discuss their reactions, as writers and readers, to the continuing presence of the sinister “Jew” in English literature, a problem discussed in Leslie Fiedler's article, “What Can We Do About Fagin?” in our May issue.

How We Used to Laugh!
A Story

by Ruth Glazer
“Did I ever tell you,” asked my mother-in-law, “about the first money that I ever earned? Now there's a story for a writer.

From the American Scene: The Service of the Temple
by Grace Goldin
Few contributions to our “American Scene” department have evoked a greater response from our readers than Grace Goldin's memoir “I Remember Tulsa” in the March 1948 COMMENTARY.

Your Life
by Moshe Halpern
Walk around all day and dream that you've a villa by the sea, And your wife plays the piano and bears with you quietly. Picture to yourself a child, yours, whose hands are smooth and tiny, And it strokes your beard and face and can call you Daddy. Go into a bar and there have entree, soup, meat, and dessert. Hear your praise; you loathe “yourself, but listen with delight. Wander off to the burlesque show, stare at painted lips, at thighs, And at vulgar, hanging breasts, moved by a thousand eyes. Drink until the streets and lamps start to carousel around you, Nod a street-girl to come over; haggle for a rendezvous. Cry up to the moon.

Cedars of Lebanon: The Holy
by Franz Rosenzweig
Franz Rosenzweig (1886-1929) was one of the leaders of the “Jewish Renaissance” (Martin Buber was another) that brightened at least one area of German Jewish life under the Weimar Republic.

On the Horizon: Adam and Eve on Delancey Street
by Isaac Rosenfeld
On the Horizon welcomes informal explorations—i.e., kibbitzes—on matters high and low. Here the novelist Isaac Rosenfeld, pondering “Jewish bacon,” is led into some speculations on the subterranean relations between sex and kashruth.  In a book review published previously in this magazine, under the title “Kreplach” (November 1948), Mr.

The Study of Man: Philosophy's Future in Our Scientific Age
by John Dewey
This month national homage is being paid to John Dewey on the occasion of his ninetieth birthday; and it is with a sense of privilege that COMMENTARY presents here the distinguished philosopher's challenging vision of the role that philosophy—the science of sciences—must play in the years ahead if it is to fulfill its responsibilities to its high mission and to our common human need.

L'Chayim! ed. by Immanuel Olsvanger
by Nathan Glick
The Jewish Joke L'Chayim! Jewish Wit and Humor Gathered and Edited by Immanuel Olsvanger. Schocken Books. 192 pp. $3.00.   The overwhelming impression left by this collection of Jewish wit and humor is that there exists no sense of humor like it in the world.

The Vital Center, by Arthur M. Schlesinger, Jr.
by Irwin Ross
Liberalism's Enemies The Vital Center: The Politics of Freedom. by Arthur M. Schlesinger, Jr. Houghton Mifflin. 274 pp. $3.00.   In trade parlance, Arthur M.

Punishment Without Crime, by S. Andhil Fineberg
by Granville Hicks
“Know-How” is Power Punishment Without Crime. by S. Andhil Fineberg. Doubleday. 337 pp. $3.50.   Punishment Without Crime, subtitled “What You Can Do About Prejudice,” is intended to be a handbook in the struggle against intolerance.

Judaic Lore in Heine, by Israel Tabak
by David Daiches
Heine's Jewish Education Judaic Lore in Heine. by Israel Tabak. Baltimore, The Johns Hopkins Press. 338 pp. $4.50.   We have long waited for an adequately equipped scholar to investigate Heine's knowledge of Jewish traditions and Hebrew literature.

A Mencken Chrestomathy, by H. L. Mencken
by Raymond Rosenthal
Dandy in Shirt-Sleeves A Mencken Chrestomathy. by H. L. Mencken. Knopf. 626 pp. $4.50.   H. L. Mencken is a self-made eccentric, as some people are self-made auto mechanics or movie writers.

The World of Emma Lazarus, by H. E. Jacob
by Marvin Meyers
The Fond Biographer The World of Emma Lazarus. by H. E. Jacob. Shocken Books. 222 pp. $3.00.   By a miscalculation of a century, history has given Emma Lazarus an avuncular biographer who was obviously designed to be her real uncle.

Reader Letters October 1949
by Our Readers
TO THE EDITOR OF COMMENTARY: "The Knickerbocker Case: A Report on the Current Crusade," by Morris Freedman, in the August issue of COMMENTARY, is a curious medley of fact and fancy.

November, 1949Back to Top
Mr. Rosenfeld's Article
by Our Readers
To the Editor: As a subscriber to your magazine, I must write you about the article “Adam and Eve on Delancey Street” by Isaac Rosenfeld that appeared in your October issue. We Jews have always stressed derech eretz—good manners—for private and public living.

“A Dialogue of Two Histories”
by Our Readers
To the Editor: After reading Daniel J. Boorstin's article “A Dialogue of Two Histories,” in the October COMMENTARY, I must express my gratitude for it, as well as for the many other articles in your magazine that I have enjoyed the past few months.

Academic Fellow-Travelers
by Our Readers
To the Editor: I enjoyed reading Sidney Hook's very interesting article on “Academic Integrity and Academic Freedom” in the October COMMENTARY.

On Jewish Fiction
by Our Readers
To the Editor: Since I must be the corpus vile, it is hard for me to make the observations on Irving Howe's “The Stranger and the Victim” (August COMMENTARY) that ought, after all, to be made.

Further Comment
by Our Readers
To the Editor: Milton Konvitz's article is a convincing argument for liberalism and separation of synagogue and state in Israel. But, I believe, the whole discussion operates in a vacuum.

Dr. Konvitz Replies
by Our Readers
To the Editor: I did not speak “glibly” of the United States as a “freie medina.” I could not have spoken more seriously.

The Religious Question in Israel
by Our Readers
To the Editor: Milton Konvitz's article “A Plea for Religious Freedom in Israel,” in the September COMMENTARY, holds much interest for those of us who are following with some concern the trend of affairs in Israel.

Group Life Within the American Pattern:
Its Scope and Its Limits

by Oscar Handlin
Americans are famous for being “joiners”; every foreign visitor has been astonished at the richness and complexity of group life—religious, ethnic, social, etc.—in America; and the wide range of cultural, social, and political objectives tc which these groups turn their energies.

Did F.D.R. Escape Wilson's Failure?
Idealism vs. Power Politics in American Foreign Policy

by Richard Crossman
Today, motivated less by the disinterestedness of historical judgment than by the urgent necessities of realistic decisions in the world arena, many are subjecting the foreign policy of Franklin D.

Meditations on the Fall and Winter Holidays
by Charles Reznikoff
I New Year's The solid houses in the mist are thin as tissue paper; the water laps slowly at the rocks; and the ducks from the north are here at rest on the gray ripples. The company in which we went so free of care, so carelessly, has scattered.

Stuyvesant Town's Threat to Our Liberties:
Government Waives the Constitution for Private Enterprise

by Charles Abrams
New York State's highest court has upheld the right of the Metropolitan Life Insurance Company to restrict “to whites only” its huge housing development on New York's East Side, near the United Nations site, built with the public aid of the City of New York; now the Supreme Court of the United States is preparing to consider the constitutionality of this decision.

God and the Psychoanalysts:
Can Freud and Religion Be Reconciled?

by Irving Kristol
Perhaps nothing is more characteristic of our times than the way that ideas usually thought to be contrary to each other are often enthusiastically upheld by one person in one breath; so it is with our democratic political thinkers who have rediscovered the virtues of conservatism, and with our avant-garde intellectuals who are most vocally concerned with tradition.

An Evening with Israel's Poets:
Creative Voices in a Time of Trouble

by Herbert Howarth
Herbert Howarth is a young English poet who served with the British administration in Palestine from 1943 to 1945, when he resigned in protest against his government's policy.

The Conspirators
A Story

by Julius Horwitz
The three people, the young man, his wife and Mrs. Grady, hurried along the empty dark street talking about God, his blessing and power.

Hitler and the Gypsies:
The Fate of Europe's Oldest Aryans

by Dora Yates
Among the most poignant episodes in recent history was the extermination of some tens of thousands—we do not even know the approximate figure—of Gypsies by the Nazi terror.

On the Margin in France:
Life in a World of Uneasy Moneys

by Milton Klonsky
From France, Milton Klonsky sends a personal report on the eccentricities of international finance—untouched, at the time, by the most recent devaluation—as it involves the lives of various people in that country. _____________   You don't have to be a millionaire to appreciate our own well-bred, balanced, clean-cut American dollar that, out of its heart of gold, endows and supports the world.

From the American Scene: The Kanliper B.&S.B.S of N.Y.
by Harry Gersh
Harry Gersh's previous informal sociological explorations in COMMENTARY have addressed themselves to such various aspects of American Jewish culture as home cooking, kochaleins, and “paintners.” He turns here to another of the basic institutions of Jewish life—the landsmanshaften, those characteristic Jewish immigrant societies.

Cedars of Lebanon: Portrait of a Hebraist
by J. Trunk
Between the two world wars, Jewish Poland was the scene of competing cultural tendencies, where Yiddishist and Hebraist came to grips at every opportunity and on every level, through rival educational systems, publishing houses, political and social organizations, and in the folk, radical, and Zionist movements, where adherents of the two camps ran into the thousands.

On the Horizon: The Folk Revival in Jewish Music
by Kurt List
Kurt List here reports on the 1948-49 Jewish music season, and tries to assess the promise—for the sound future development of Jewish music in America—of the major trend he noted in the past twelve months: the predominance of the “folk music” of Israel.  _____________   To the casual observer, the 1948-49 season of Jewish music seemed no doubt a remarkably prosperous one.

The Study of Man:“The American Soldier” as Science
by Nathan Glazer
[The Emperor Frederick II] wanted to find out what kind of speech and what manner of speech children would have when they grew up, if they spoke to no one beforehand.

Promise and Fulfilment, by Arthur Koestler
by George Lichtheim
The End of Jewish History? Promise and Fulfilment. by Arthur Koestler. Macmillan. 335 pp. $4.00.   Promise and Fulfilment, Arthur Koestler's story of Israel's rise to nationhood, is a difficult book to review, largely because it must have been an easy book to write.

Image and Idea, by Philip Rahv
by Leslie Fiedler
The Ordeal of Criticism Image and Idea. by Philip Rahv. New Directions. 164 pp. $3.00.   In the texture of these essays, there is the manifest intent of reaching a relatively large, amateur audience.

Israel: A History of the Jewish People, by Rufus Learsi
by H. Fischel
From Abraham to Israel Israel: A History of the Jewish People. by Rufus Learsi. The World Publishing Company. 715 pp. $5.00.   On the jacket of this book we find that it is a “History of the Jewish People” and “the Four-Thousand-Year Epic Story.” Unfortunately, in decisive parts it is more story and less history. Learsi's work is one of the few which covers the oldest period, that great formative age in which new religions, new peoples, and new nations were born and which is hidden behind a veil of myth, jumbled-up threads of tradition, taboos on critical insight, and a general lack of data. Any attempt to write on the early history of the Jewish people usually invites a commendation for courage—but not even this quality is discernible in the book.

The Travels of Benjamin the Third, by Mendele Mocher Seforim
by Jacob Sloan
Don Quixote of Tunyadevka The Travels of Benjamin The Third. by Mendele Mocher Seforim. Schocken. 124 pp. $1.50.   “Poverty and degradation and lack of employment and misery accustom men to pin their hopes on follies not in consonance with the ways of the world.” So wrote Mendele Mocher Seforim in one of his novels.

America and Cosmic Man, by Wyndham Lewis
by Dennis Wrong
America as the Future America And Cosmic Man. by Wyndham Lewis. Doubleday. 247 pp. $2.75.   This is a curious book. We have become so accustomed to the picture of America as a cultural wasteland and to attacks on the standardization of American life, that when a writer singles out these widely deplored things for praise, he seems at first sight merely wilfully intransigent or paradoxical. True, in recent years literary nationalism has become a familiar phenomenon represented by such figures as Dos Passos, MacLeish, and Van Wyck Brooks.

Reader Letters November 1949
by Our Readers
The Religious Question in Israel TO THE EDITOR OF COMMENTARY: Milton Konvitz's article "A Plea for Religious Freedom in Israel," in the September COM- MENTARY, holds much interest for those of us who are following with some concern the trend of affairs in Israel.

December, 1949Back to Top
The Stuyvesant Town Case
by Our Readers
To the Editor: In my article last month on “Stuyvesant Town's Threat to Our Liberties,” I omitted the fact that the case was initiated and is being taken to the Supreme Court of the United States by the American Jewish Congress, the American Civil Liberties Union, and the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People.

On “Punishment Without Crime”
by Our Readers
To the Editor: S. Andhil Fineberg's handbook on combating prejudice, Punishment Without Crime, seemed to me a far more impressive and useful book than your reviewer Granville Hicks found it.

On “Commentary”
by Our Readers
To the Editor: I am delighted with the October issue of COMMENTARY. It seems to me that your magazine has clearly taken the lead in creative publications in this country.

Professor Hook Replies
by Our Readers
To the Editor: My contention against Dr. Lynd is that in her discussion of the University of Washington cases she departed from accepted canons of scholarship.

“Academic Freedom and Academic Integrity”
by Our Readers
To the Editor: In his article “Academic Freedom and Academic Integrity” (COMMENTARY, October 1949), Professor Sidney Hook accuses me of intellectual dishonesty and lack of elementary scholarly care in my study of the recent dismissals at the University of Washington (American Scholar, Summer 1949).

Mr. Rosenfeld's Article
by Our Readers
To the Editor: During the four years that the American Jewish Committee has sponsored COMMENTARY, it has, as you know, never attempted to exercise control over its contents.

Social Security Under the Union Label?
Labor's Welfare Drive and the Fair Deal

by A. Raskin
In the last wave of strikes in coal and steel, the familiar headlines and the presence of such well-known figures as John L.

The Arabs of Israel:
Pages from a Correspondent's Notebook

by Hal Lehrman
It is easy, amid all the discussion of the problem of the Arab refugees from Palestine—with seven-digit figures and large schemes occupying the center of the diplomatic stage—to forget the practical realities and the actual living relationships between Arabs and Jews that set the framework of the “Arab Problem.” Here, in these pages from a correspondent's notebook, Hal Lehrman describes these intimate relations as they reveal themselves in Israel in their complex detail.

The Artist as Witness of Freedom:
The Independent Mind in an Age of Ideologies

by Albert Camus
In all the organized efforts to combat totalitarianism, it is often overlooked that the most Uncompromising fighter against the regimentation of the human spirit by the giant state may well be the unorganized individual who simply insists upon speaking his mind; and Albert Camus here asserts that it is the creative artist and thinker who is this individual par excellence.

The Rabbi
by Ralph Gordon
Through the door, worshipful, we watch him, Mother Holding our shoulder-blades, one by one, and thrusting Our noses in for a look.

Slow Revolution in Richmond, Va.:
A New Pattern in the Making

by David
Almost every Jew has an opinion about what the future holds for Jewish life in America—and usually a program to go along with it.

Books for Jewish Children:
The Limits of the Didactic Approach

by Isa Kapp
An atmosphere of anxious concern surrounds the production of Jewish books for children. Can they be counted on to make our youngsters conscious, self-respecting Jews? Or—others ask—do they stress Jewish uniqueness (or Israeli prowess) so much as to separate and estrange Jewish children from the common American life? This is a field in which ideologists, educators, group workers, social scientists, and just plain parents have done a good deal of theorizing; and quite a few bright-jacketed books have been coming off the presses.

The Jews of Kurdistan:
A First-Hand Report on a Near Eastern Mountain Community

by Walter Fischel
Walter J. Fischel, an internationally known authority on the life and history of the Near and Middle East, is at present engaged in research and teaching at the University of California, where he is chairman of the department of Near Eastern languages; formerly he was a member of the faculty of the Hebrew University in Jerusalem. _____________   When I set out to visit Kurdistan I was aware that Jewish communities existed in such towns as Kirkuk, Arbil, and Mosul.

Kafka: Ritual Without Religion:
The Modern Intellectual's Shamefaced Atheism

by Guenther Anders
Of the many complex “interpretations” that have grown up around the writings of Franz Kafka, none has been more popular than the religious one; sometimes, indeed, it has seemed as if Kafka was not a literary man at all, but the prophet of a 20th-century gospel.

In the Beginning Was the Word
A Story

by Hamlen Hunt
This summer, they had set out on exploration which was quite daring for native New Yorkers and for people born in Brooklyn.

Small Perfect Manhattan
by Peter Viereck
Unable to breathe, I inhaled the classic Aegean. Losing my northern shadow I sheared the noon                Of an almond grove. The tears of marble                        Thanked me for laughter. Shapes!

From the American Scene: Report from the Farm
by Earl Raab
Earl Raab, city-born and bred, is now a dairy-farmer in Maine, whence be writes this report. _____________   We are in the “cow business”—permanently, we think—but the Fable of the Chicken and the not down.

Cedars of Lebanon: The Death of Tammuz
by Saul Tschernichowsky
Saul Tschernichowsky was born in 1875 in the Russian Crimea, a birthplace that set him apart from most Hebrew writers of his generation, who grew up in the Orthodox atmosphere of the towns and larger cities of the Pale.

On the Horizon: Sholom Aleichem in Exile
by Israel Cohen
Through this personal memoir with its unpublished letters from the pen of Sholom Aleichem, Israel Cohen here offers a glimpse of Yiddish literature's great figure in his last years.  _____________   Rummaging recently among an accumulation of old letters and papers, I came across some letters in Yiddish, written in a small, neat hand, and signed with an elaborate and indecipherable flourish, which immediately evoked a train of pleasant memories.

The Study of Man: A Broader Approach to Jewish History
by H. Schmidt
The nationalist interest has inevitably been a major factor in the writing of history in many countries in recent decades—and it has increasingly been the pattern through which the long course of Jewish history has been viewed by Jewish historians.

Strategy for Liberals, by Irwin Ross
by Daniel Bell
Has America a Ruling Class? Strategy for Liberals: The Politics of the Mixed Economy. by Irwin Ross. Harper. 211 Pp. $3.00.   It is a singular commentary on the state of American political thinking that in almost two decades no new “names” have come to the fore among left-wing and liberal thinkers.

Mary, by Sholem Asch; Why Jesus Died, by Pierre van Paassen
by Sholom Kahn
Two Latter-Day Gospels Mary. by Sholem Asch. Translated by Leo Steinberg. Putnam. 436 pp. $3.50. Why Jesus Died. by Pierre van Paassen. Dial. 283 pp. $3.00.   The third novel which Sholem Asch has devoted to the story of the birth of Christianity is a document which, at the very least, has the fascination of complexity.

Poems 1928-1948, by Edouard Roditi; The Rocking Chair and Other Poems, by A. M. Klein; Poems, by David Ignatow
by Neil Weiss
Three Poets Poems, 1928-1948. by Edouard Roditi. New Directions. 151 pp. $2.00. The Rocking Chair and Other Poems. by A. M. Klein. Toronto, The Ryerson Press.

The Jews in Medieval Germany, by Guido Kisch
by Alfred Werner
The Brighter Middle Ages The Jews in Medieval Germany: A Study of their Legal and Social Status. by Guido Kisch. University of Chicago Press.

Aesthetics and History in the Visual Arts; and Sketch for a Self-Portrait, by Bernard Berenson
by Meyer Schapiro
The Last Aesthete Aesthetics and History in the Visual Arts. by Bernard Berenson. Pan Theon. 260 pp. $4.00. Sketch for a Self-Portrait. by Ber Nard Berenson. Pantheon.

Reader Letters December 1949
by Our Readers
Mr. Rosenfeld's Article To THE EDITOR OF COMMENTARY: During the four years that the American Jew- ish Committee has sponsored COMMENTARY, it has, as you know, never attempted to exercise control over its contents.




Welcome to Commentary Magazine.
We hope you enjoy your visit.
As a visitor to our site, you are allowed 8 free articles this month.
This is your first of 8 free articles.

If you are already a digital subscriber, log in here »

Print subscriber? For free access to the website and iPad, register here »

To subscribe, click here to see our subscription offers »

Please note this is an advertisement skip this ad
Clearly, you have a passion for ideas.
Subscribe today for unlimited digital access to the publication that shapes the minds of the people who shape our world.
Get for just
YOU HAVE READ OF 8 FREE ARTICLES THIS MONTH.
FOR JUST
YOU HAVE READ OF 8 FREE ARTICLES THIS MONTH.
FOR JUST
Welcome to Commentary Magazine.
We hope you enjoy your visit.
As a visitor, you are allowed 8 free articles.
This is your first article.
You have read of 8 free articles this month.
YOU HAVE READ 8 OF 8
FREE ARTICLES THIS MONTH.
for full access to
CommentaryMagazine.com
INCLUDES FULL ACCESS TO:
Digital subscriber?
Print subscriber? Get free access »
Call to subscribe: 1-800-829-6270
You can also subscribe
on your computer at
CommentaryMagazine.com.
LOG IN WITH YOUR
COMMENTARY MAGAZINE ID
Don't have a CommentaryMagazine.com log in?
CREATE A COMMENTARY
LOG IN ID
Enter you email address and password below. A confirmation email will be sent to the email address that you provide.