Page 201 - Jewish Book Annual Volume 31

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/ 1973
Two awards for books on Jewish thought are being presented
this year. One is to Samuel Sandmel, distinguished service pro-
fessor at the Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion
in Cincinnati. A specialist in the New Testament and especially
its relationship to Judaism, he is professor of Biblical and Hel-
lenistic literature. He has also been Hillel Professor of Jewish
Literature and Thought at Vanderbilt University and director of
the Yale University Hillel Foundation. In World War II, he
served for four years as a navy chaplain. Dr. Sandmel has re-
ceived many honors including an honorary degree from the Uni-
versity of Vermont and has been president of the Society of
Biblical Literature. His first book, published in 1956, was
A Jew-
ish Understanding of the New Testament
and since then he has
authored twelve other books. His most recent is a novel about
Moses entitled
Alone A top the Mountain.
He is receiving the
award today for his work
Two Liv ing Tradi t ions: Essays on Re-
ligion and the Bible.
In this collection, Dr. Sandmel presents
graceful essays dealing with modern thought on many aspects of
contemporary religion and does so with wide-ranging scholarship
and profound interpretation.
The second award-winning book for Jewish thought is of an
entirely different character. I t is
Souls on Fire: Portraits and
Legends of Hasidic Masters,
by Elie Wiesel. Mr. Wiesel is now
distinguished professor at the City College of New York in the
Department of Jewish Studies. He has published more than ten
books, almost all concerned with the Holocaust. A survivor of the
Auschwitz concentration camp and of Buchenwald, Mr. Wiesel
has spent his life in an effort to interpret the meaning of the
Holocaust for today’s generation. He is a product of a Hasidic
environment and has brought to this book his superb command
of language and sensitivity to the needs of our time. A master
storyteller, much of this book was originally presented as a series
of lectures at the 92nd Street YM-YWHA in New York.
Mr. Leon Jolson presents annually an award for a book on the
Nazi Holocaust. A distinguished communal leader and generous
benefactor of worthy Jewish causes, Mr. Jolson is himself a sur-
vivor of the Warsaw Ghetto and has a keen personal interest in