JTS Professors Win National Jewish Book Awards; Alumni Honored

Two professors and two alumni receive accolades for their books 

Two JTS professors have received 2018 National Jewish Book awards, sponsored by the Jewish Book Council. Dr. Jack Wertheimer, Joseph and Martha Mendelson Professor of American Jewish History, won in the American Jewish Studies category for his book, The New American Judaism: How Jews Practice Their Religion Today. Dr. Alan Mittleman, Aaron Rabinowitz and Simon H. Rifkind Professor of Jewish Philosophy, won in the Modern Jewish Thought and Experience category for his book, Does Judaism Condone Violence? Holiness and Ethics in the Jewish Tradition. He received the Dorot Foundation Award in Memory of Joy Ungerleider Mayerson.  

In The New American Judaism, Dr. Wertheimer delves deeply into understanding how American Jewish observance has shifted in light of the massive social upheavals of the recent decades. In Does Judaism Condone Violence, Dr. Mittleman discusses the relationship between holiness and violence within the Jewish tradition; and in examining biblical texts, makes a philosophical case against religiously inspired violence.

Two JTS alumni also were recognized by the annual awards. Jonathan Decter (KGS ’02) won the Mimi S. Frank Award in Memory of Becky Levy in the Sephardic culture category for his work, Dominion Built of Praise: Panegyric and Legitimacy Among Jews in the Medieval Mediterranean; and alumna Alicia Jo Rabins (KGS ’07) was a finalist for the Berru Award in Memory of Ruth and Bernie Weinflash for her book of poetry, Fruit Geode.

Read about the 2018 National Jewish Book awards