Page 32 - Jewish Book Annual Volume 1

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to books o f Jewish interest in a dramatic way, and was received enthus i-
astically by members of the congregation, especially mothers who have wan ted
to place attractively pr inted books in the hands o f the ir youngsters at home .
R a b b i
C.
H e r t z ,
T em p l e B ’nai Israel, W i l l iamson , W. Va.
15.
A special exh ib i t of Jewish books at the Pub l ic Library was on display
from November 23rd to 30th. A selected reading l ist o f books o f general
Jewish interest, comp i led by the James V. Brown Library o f W i l l iamsport ,
was distributed. T h e fo l low ing week a special exh ib i t o f Jewish books was
he ld at the Center of the Synagogue. Books were contr ibuted by the pub l ic
library as wel l as ind iv idua l families.
T h e L i f e of Lou i s Brande i s
by Jacob
de Haas was reviewed.
R a b b i A a r o n G r e e n b a u m ,
Cong. Oh e v Sho lom , W i l l i am spo r t , Pa.
D. COMMENTS IN T H E JEW ISH PRESS
We Jews are known as the Peop le o f the Book. We have g iven to the
world its greatest book, the Bible, and the genius of our p eop le has always
expressed itself in the wr it ing o f and love for books. In the Ghe t to a Jewish
home w i thou t a col lect ion of representative books was un th inkab le . In our
day and in this country, however, we seem to be los ing our traditional
attachment to the pr inted word. T h e r e are Jewish homes where even the
Bib le and a set of prayer books are no t to be found .
Judaism is a ph i losophy of learn ing and knowledge. N o one can ge t to
understand and appreciate the Jew and his faith w i thou t careful and devoted
study. If Judaism in this country no longer has a strong ho ld upon the
masses of our peop le , it is primarily due to the fact that we do no t any more
cherish sacred feelings about books. Let us, however, be frank enough to
admit that our spiritual leaders are, at least to some ex ten t , to be b lamed
for this state of affairs. We have preached and appea led to our p eop le in
behalf of anyth ing and everything, bu t we have neg lected to popu lar ize the
Jewish book. Ther e was a time when the comp la in t was made that we do
not have a Jewish l iterature in the Engl ish language , bu t this comp la in t
no longer holds true today. Good books in Engl ish are pub l ished annua l ly ,
but they enjoy a poor c irculation and they are no t read. . . .
T h e Protestant churches of America have a certain week in the year
which is known as Re l ig ious Book Week. We be l ieve that we can we l l
follow their examp le and observe a Jewish Book Week. Let the rabbis of
America devote the ir sermons on the Sabbath to po in t ou t the histor ic role
of the book in Judaism and urge the peop le to con t inue to buy and read
good Jewish books. W e sincerely hope that our suggest ion w i l l appea l to the
rabbinate of the country. We are very anx ious to hear from those Rabb is who
are go ing to introduce Jewish Book Week in to the ir congregat iona l calendar.
R a b b i S. Fe l ix M end e l sohn ,
in the
Chicago Jew ish Sen t ine l ,
Apr i l 1, 1927.
“T h e Boston Pub l ic Library probably became the first l ibrary in the
Un ited States to recognize the impor tance o f the Jewish book as an integral
part o f Jewish contemporary and supp lementary educa t ion . . . . Com-
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