Page 76 - Jewish Book Annual Volume 30

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66
J
e w i s h
B
o o k
A
n n u a l
Awareness: Discovering Jewish Identity,” “The Languages of the
Jews,” and “Youth in Search of God.” Such a magazine is capable
of coping with one of the chief obstacles in Jewish youth educa­
tion, namely the apathy of the pupil. As they approach
Keeping
Posted
with spontaneity and zest, the youth discover for them­
selves the vitality and relevance of their Jewish heritage.
Text Books on Israel
It is a significant fact that what has been acknowledged as the
most beautiful textbook for Jewish youth published in America
is a text on the State of Israel published by the Union of Amer­
ican Hebrew Congregations:
Israel Today
by Harry Essrig and
Abraham Segal. Profusely illustrated, colorfully bound and re­
plete with maps and charts, it makes Israel come alive for our
Jewish teenagers. Its language sparkles, creates excitment, and
compels reading from beginning to end. It is but one of a series
of texts on Israel for various age groups.
Behold the Land
by
Helen Fine is for younger pupils, and
Children of Israel
(in
process) is for still younger children.
The Commission on Jewish Education took the initiative to
assert that a paramount factor in the education of an American
Jewish youth must be an introduction to the religions of his
neighbors. This need is met by the text
Our Religion and Our
Neighbors
by Milton G. Miller and Sylvan Schwartzman. This
text is also an example of cooperation between the Commission
and the Department of Education of the Hebrew Union College,
where Rabbi Sylvan D. Schwartzman is professor of education.
Another “first” in the field of Jewish youth guidance are the
two forthright volumes on love, sex and marriage by Rabbi Roland
Gittelsohn,
Consecrated Unto Me
and
My Beloved is Mine.
Their
very theme has rendered them controversial, yet most schools
report that in the hands of an able teacher, preferably a rabbi or
a psychologist, these books are an effective instrument for mental
health and a formidable weapon against assimilation by way of
intermarriage.
Teaching Social Action
Reform Judaism began as a revolutionary movement inspired
by the prophets of Israel, who proclaimed that an ineluctable
condition for the worship of God was the practice of personal
integrity and the cultivation of social conscience. A ll ceremonial,
symbol, festival and ritual were but means to the end of righreous