Page 182 - Jewish Book Annual Volume 25

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e w i s h
o o k
n n u a l
gogue background, he would come to know, and ultimately love
and feel responsible for, his fellow Jews wherever they may be.
It is inevitable that w ithin modern Jewry there be differences
about Judaism, but there must be agreement about unity in
Jewish education, lest there be no education at all.
Cohen concludes his trenchant analysis of the many problems,
obstacles and discouragement in the path o f Jewish education
with a moving appeal to his colleagues: “We have no right to
despair, no right to self-pity and no right to shallowness. Jewish
education deserves all the devotion and intensity of which
we are capable. Like all the
m i ts v o t ,
such effort w ill bring its
own reward.”
The First Anthology
A volume on Jewish education, differing from those previously
mentioned, is
Ju da ism an d the Jew ish Schoo l
edited by Pilch
and Ben-Horin. The book, the first of its kind, is an anthology
of Jewish educational thought compiled by two seasoned and
discriminating educators who collected the harvest o f essays,
articles and monographs on the history, philosophy and experi-
ence in Jewish education in America published w ithin the last
twenty-five years, and a number written some two decades pre-
T h e editors rightly felt that “the time is ripe for a critical
evaluation and examination of our educational goals and the
means for their attainment,” and intended the book to be “in
the nature of inventory or stocktaking, of what is now available
to the student of Jewish educational ideas.” They maintain that
the anthology does not offer an educational philosophy, for
Jewish educators have, in the main, dealt w ith “varieties of pre-
scriptions for the school’s subject matter and method” rather
than with philosophy. Yet the selected articles point to ideals
and theories of education which bespeak the variety of Jewish
educational philosophy described as: Communal-Hebraic pro-
gressive; Hebraic essentialist; Cultural progressive; Yiddish pro-
gressive; Orthodox, Conservative, Reform and Communal
Hebraic-Reconstructionist. The contributors of some fifty papers,
comprising educators, rabbis, scholars and cultured laymen, repre-
sent the whole gamut of Jewish religious, nationalist and secular
theories of Jewish education. T o understand better the views of
each of the writers, the editors have done well to add a few
lines about their background and the nature of their commit-
ment and participation in Jewish education.
Despite the great variety of views and formulas, the reader will
find in
Juda ism an d the Jew ish Schoo l,
an integrated story of