The Arty Semite

This Week in Forward Arts and Culture

By Ezra Glinter

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Yael Bartana
  • I revisit the life and work of the great music and cultural critic Ellen Willis.

  • Jenna Weissman Joselit pays homage to a colonial-era circumcision set.

  • Carol Zemel explores the irony-laden work of Israeli artist Yael Bartana, who is representing Poland at this year’s Venice Biennale.

  • Shoshana Olidort and Jake Marmer review the letters of Paul Celan and Ilana Shmueli with some letters of their own.

  • Graham Lawson documents the struggle to bring a Picasso to Ramallah.

  • Adam Rovner reviews a new book by Guy Alroey, showing that Jews left Europe for news of economic opportunity dispensed by Jewish information bureaus more often than they did for fear of pogroms.

  • Benjamin Ivry honors Georg Tintner, an overlooked Vienna-born conductor who spent most of his career in New Zealand, Australia and Canada.

  • Philologos celebrates the disappearing German Jewish tradion of the Wimpel.


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  • "It pains and shocks me to say this, but here goes: My father was right all along. He always told me, as I spouted liberal talking points at the Shabbos table and challenged his hawkish views on Israel and the Palestinians to his unending chagrin, that I would one day change my tune." Have you had a similar experience?
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  • "Woody Allen should have quit while he was ahead." Ezra Glinter's review of "Magic in the Moonlight": http://jd.fo/f4Q1Q
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  • "Mark your calendars: It was on Sunday, July 20, that the momentum turned against Israel." J.J. Goldberg's latest analysis on Israel's ground operation in Gaza:
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