Page 27 - Jewish Book Annual Volume 3

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1943) offers a contribution towards a better understanding of some
theological concepts upon which Judaism and Christianity are
strongly divided. The attainment of better understanding is the
object also of Rabbi Abraham H. Israelitan’s
Israel Speaks fo r
Democracy
in which a comparative study of the ideas of prophetic
religion and American democracy are presented for young people.
A religious guide of faith and practice for the Jews in the armed
services is offered by Rabbi Moses M. Yosher in a handy manual
entitled
Israel in the Ranks
(New York, 1943). I t is based upon
the text of
Mahneh Yisrael
by the famous Hofets Hayim (Rabbi
Israel Meir Hakohen of Radun). To serve a similar function
Rabbi Baruch Korff presents the
Warrior Manual
(New York,
1943) a compilation of prayers with an essay on the dietary laws,
and the Rabbinical Council of America issued
A Companion fo r
Jews in the armed Forces
, a very useful guide for religious conduct
(New York, 1944).
Towards Historic Judaism
by E. Berkovits
(Oxford, 1943) is a plea for the rediscovery of historical Judaism
insisting that there is a crying need for a great spiritual revival
of Judaism. In
Love of Torah
by Rabbi David Rubin (New York,
1943) one meets with pious thoughts and observations on religious
themes by the well-known Hasidic Rabbi of Sassow.
Fiction is a literary realm to which many a Jewish writer makes
notable contributions. Some of them deal with exclusively Jewish
subjects while in the writings of others, even of non-Jews, one
meets with Jewish characters and scenes, although otherwise they
are without special Jewish interest. Sholem Asch, now as familiar
to the English reader as he has been for many years to those who
speak Yiddish, his native tongue, published his long promised
The Apostle
, a novel based on the life of Saul of Tarsus (New
York, Putnam, 1943). Like its forerunner
The Nazarene
, it was
translated into English from the Yiddish original by Maurice
Samuel. With the publication of his
Josephi the Provider
(New
York, Knopf, 1944) Thomas Mann completed his cycle of four
biblical novels based on the life of Joseph. The earlier volumes
were
Joseph and his Brothers
,
Young Joseph
and
Joseph in Egypt.
They are all written in a vein which in many ways resembles the
Midrashic mode of dealing with biblical events and personalities.
Thomas Mann is also among the contributors to the collection of
ten short novels of Hitler’s war against the moral code, entitled
The Ten Commandments
, edited by Armin Robinson with a preface
by Hermann Rauschning (New York, Simon and Schuster, 1943).
In this volume there are several stories with Jewish characters
not only by Mann but also by Rebecca West, Franz Werfel, Jules
Romains and Andre Maurois. Lewis Browne’s novel
See What I
Mean
? (New York, Random House, 1943) is an expose of the
activities of the Crusaders, a pro-fascist, anti-Semitic organization.
Phyllis Bottome in her novel entitled
Survival
, (Boston, Little,
Brown, 1943) endeavored to present the personal and professional
experiences during the days of the air blitz in Great Britain of a
well-known psychiatrist who came from Vienna. The effect of
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