THE JEWISH NEWS
Shavuot — Summit of Summits
of July 20, 1951
Member American Association of English-Jewish Newspapers, Michigan Press Association, National
every Friday by The Jewish News Publishing Co., 17100 West Seven Mile Road, Detroit 35.
Mich., VE 8-9364. Subscription $5 a year. Foreign 56.
Entered as second class matter Aug. 6, 1942 at Post ()Met., Detroit, Mich. under act of Congress of March
Editor and Publisher
SIDNEY SHMARAK CARMI M. SLOMOVITZ
Shavuot Scriptural Selections
Ex. 19:1-20:23. Num. 28:26-23.
Pentateuchal portions for first day of Shavuot, today,
Portions for second day of Shavuot, Saturday, Deut.
3:12; Saturday, Hab. 3:1-19.
Prophetical portions: Friday, Ezek. 1:1-28;
VOL. No. 15
June 12, 1959
Honoring Our Teachers Dedicated Services
In its resolution dedicating Teacher's
Whenever concern is expressed over
the difficulties encountered in advancing Day as an annual observance in all Jewish
Jewish educational needs, we are inevit- communities in this country, the Ameri-
ably confronted with the problem of the can Association for Jewish Education
shortage of teachers and the difficulties declared that "formal Jewish education is
our schools encounter in encouraging able indispensable to the spiritual, cultural and
men and women to enter the Jewish social well-being of the American Jewish
teaching profession. community" and that "there is no factor
It is no wonder, therefore, that the in the educational process more signifi-
American Association for Jewish Educa- cant than the classroom teacher."
tion, in its search for means of advancing
The resolution indicated that "it is
the educational efforts of American generally agreed that for the teacher to
Jewry, has also taken into consideration be effective he not only must feel reason-
the need for raising the standards of the ably secure in his position, and obtain
Jewish teachers and of giving due recog- adequate compensation for his services,
nition to their services.
but should also enjoy social status in the
Thus, the Yom Ha-Moreh
community and experience recognition
Teacher's Day —. proclaimed on L a g and appreciation of his efforts;" t h at
b'Omer, our traditional Scholars' Festival, "there is a compelling need, growing out
is a most appropriate precedent for action of the critical teacher shortage today, to
in support of the movement to encourage dramatize the central importance of the
the .functioning teachers in their labors Jewish teacher in helping to assure the
and to inspire others to enter the Jewish continuity of Jewish life, and to make the
attractions of Jewish education as a life-
Pursuing the program introduced by work socially dignified and professionally
the National Association for Jewish Edu- more satisfying."
cation, the United Hebrew Schools of
These should be viewed as elemen-
Detroit will honor a group of teachers tary facts.
But they are often overlooked.
who have served our local schools for It is vital that
they should be emphasized
more than 25 years. The citations to be again. The AAJE
has rendered a good
presented to these teachers at the annual service by establishing
a Jewish Teacher's
meeting, on Tuesday, will be a mark of Day in this country, and
the United He-
recognition of the dedicated services of brew Schools are to be commended
a group of educators who have con- pursuing the principles established by the
secrated themselves to one of the most
important services in Jewish life.
Solving U.S. Jewish Education Problem
The American Association for Jew-
ish Education made history at its 20th
anniversary convention last week, with
the release of the National Study of
There are many disturbing revela-
tions in the report of the nationwide
survey. But there also are many hearten-
ing factors. The fact that parents are so
anxious to provide a Jewish education for
their children is especially encouraging.
The chief obstacles on the road to
greater progress is the limited time which
the children devote to their Jewish studies
and the shortage of good teachers. By
facing the issue squarely, AAJE has pre-
sented the available facts without sugar-
coating and has offered a long-term plan
of action in finding a solution to the
* * *
The "finale" in the summary, in
which important recommendations are
made to national organizations concerned
with Jewish education, "in the hope that
the study will help them to enable Ameri-
can Jews to rise to a higher madregah,"
makes these valuable observations:
"In Hassidic literature there is the concept
of madregot—"steps" or levels of living and
being. In that spirit we can say that there are
four madregot of Jewish living and being in
America as everywhere. The lowest and the
deepest madregah is the vital or biologic one:—
being a member of the Jewish family and
accepting identification with it. The second
madregah is the social:—Jewish fellowship, in
its many forms of affiliation and participation;
synagogual, communal and global. The third
madregah is the cultural:—the study and knowl-
edge of the literary-historic tradition, with its
biblical and post-biblical content and its Hebraic
forms. The fourth and highest madregah is the
ethical:—integrating the ethos of Jewish culture
into person values, outlook and conduct. Most
American Jews in our day have reached the
first two madregot, the biologic and the social,
identification and fellowship. The grand aim of
all Jewish educational endeavor is to help them
reach the third madregah, that of Jewish lcnowl-
edge and culture; and through it to raise them-
selves personally to the highest madregah, as
`witnesses and partners of the Almighty'.
"There have been different ways and
approaches to the Ideal. A generation ago,
during the days of the 'bootstrap' generation,
these differences seemed to represent an-
tagonistic outlooks:—culturists and religionists,
Zionists and anti-Zionists, YiddishiSts and Hebra-
ists, philanthropists and Judaists. That genera-
tion found it possible to enable all of these
values to 'live themselves out' and to arrive
at new syntheses for our day; the old antagon-
isms becoming polarities in a common frame-
work of being. Likewise, and of particular im-
portance for Jewish education, has been the
theoretic antagonism in that generation between
synagogue and community. In this, too, the
`bootstrap generation' held on to two approaches
as significant and indigenous to Jewish life.
Indeed both approaches proved of great value.
The way to the Ideal continues to be the differ-
entiated way, but as in the case of the other
theoretic antagonisms of the previous genera-
tion, there is need to relate congregations and
community as polarities in a common integrat-
ing framework of Jewish being in which 'both
these and those are the words of the living God'."
* * *
Israel as a Welfare State
Described by Prof. Janowsky
Tracing the development of Israel and the origin and
distinctive features of the Jewish national movement, Dr. Oscar
I. Janowsky, professor of history at City College of New York,
clarifies the purposes which have motivated
the architects and protagonists of the Jewish
State, in a lucidly written book, "Foundations
of Israel—Emergence of a Welfare State,"
published by D. Van Nostrand Co. (120 Alex-
ander St., Princeton, N. J.).
Identifying and concentrating attention
"upon the distinctive features of Israel's de-
velopment," Prof. Janowsky has selected vital
material to guide his reader toward an under-
standing of the historical merits of Zionism
and of the trends which led to - the rebirth
Included, therefore, as reading material
in the second part of the book are immigration
and population statistics, land regulations, the
revival of Hebrew, recommendations of various international
commissions, facts relating to the Arabs and their flight from
Israel, Congressional resolutions, as well as texts of important
documents—Basle Program, Balfour Declaration, the Mandate
for Palestine; and Israel's Blueprint for Peace as presented to
the UN Ad Hoc Political Committee by Ambassador Abba Eban.
There is a distinct seriousness in
the AAJE report, in the efforts of the
surveyors, in the approach to a solution
to the gravest problem facing American
The survey undoubtedly will influ-
ence action in our own community, where
many hundreds of people were consulted
by Dr. Uriah Z. Engelman, who conducted
the study in D e t r o i t. Dr. Engelman,
has finalized the studies with great skill.
Now begins the era of bringing to
realization the vital proposals to correct
the existing shortcomings. The coopera-
tion of all American Jewish communities
is needed in this task. We believe that
wholehearted cooperation will be forth-
coming and that we may, indeed, soon
see great improvements in elevating
American Jewry's cultural status to the
madregah envisioned by the responsible
leaders who conducted the survey.
In his explanation of the welfare state as contrasted by
totalitarianism, Prof. Janowsky: "The welfare state is often
confused with the regimentation of totalitarian regimes. So
far as Israel is concerned, no such parallel can be drawn. The
essence of totalitarianism is compulsion, regimentation, and
the denial of the right to differ, none of which apply to Israel.
There, differences are freely expressed, voluntarism permeates
the entire pattern of life, and democratic processes function
effectively. The state supervises voluntary associations, but it
neither destroys them nor uses them as instruments of power."
Dr. Janowsky emphasizes that Israel needs peace and tran-
quility in order that money and manpower should not be diverted
to military purposes, and that immigrants must be trained into
a labor force. He discusses international relations, and shows
how the peace still is menaced by foreign intervention and
Maxwell Geismar's Notable
'The Last of the Provincials'
Maxwell Geismar belongs to the group of young American
writers who have enriched literary criticism with their knowl-
edge, their research abilities, their keen interpretation of
Geismar's rise to a high rung on the literary ladder is
accounted for by his newest work, "The Last of the Provincials,"
(published by Hill and Wang), which not only has gone into a
third hardcover printing but which also now is available in a
In this excellent work, Geismar evaluates the personalities
and the works of H. L. Mencken, Sinclair Lewis, Willa Cather,
Sherwood Anderson and F. Scott Fitzgerald.
Geismar's thorough studies of these literary figures are
attested to by the completeness of his analyses. The reader soon
becomes aware that this able critic has not overlooked a fact,
that he has delved into all spheres in order that his accounts
of the five authors should be as complete as possible.
In his analysis of Mencken he refers to that acrid author's
attitude toward Jews. "It is not impossible," Geismar writes,
"that Mencken's peculiar irascibility as to the Jews was related
to an innate sense of his affinity with the Hebrew moralists—and
a sense of a broken affinity. On a larger plane, at least, Mencken
could understand the predicament, before and after all social
arrangements, of man himself who was eternally in the position
of 'a turtle .born without a shell, a dog without hair, a fish
The skill that distinguishes "The Last of the Provincials"
elevates the book to an enviable position in American literature.
It gives the author indisputable rating among America's most