Author Archives for Doron Levine


What is a Mental Illness?

January 3, 2017 12:14 pm Published by Leave your thoughts

I’d like to briefly, though also hopefully clearly and thoroughly, address a specific but significant issue that has been on my mind since Ben Shapiro’s speech at YU a few weeks ago. This matter, which was tangentially referenced in Doron Levine’s recent editorial, struck me as obvious at first, but it became clear to me after several conversations that it is far from clear. Before I lay out my claim, I ask the reader to please consider my arguments carefully.... Read more


Are Survey Courses Outdated?

January 3, 2017 12:13 pm Published by Leave your thoughts

Every YC student is required to take a survey course, which is a broad introduction to a field of study. The Jewish studies requirements include at least one survey course on classical, medieval, or modern Jewish history. Many majors – such as psychology, sociology, and political science – require at least one introductory course. The history department especially relies upon survey courses, requiring two surveys of European history and at least one survey of ancient or modern historiography (in lieu... Read more


A Communication on Communication

January 3, 2017 12:12 pm Published by Leave your thoughts

To: Subject: Your Facebook Response Dear Stew Dent, I didn’t want to put this on Facebook, because I think that the best discussions happen without the burden of publicity, but I still feel that this would be an important conversation to have. I’ve been thinking a lot about how you replied to my article. I’m glad that you cared enough about my work to respond to it, but I also feel somewhat disrespected and very confused. I’m a decent... Read more


Never Again?

January 3, 2017 12:11 pm Published by Leave your thoughts

Every year growing up, come May, our days became a perpetual shuffle to and from assemblies and speeches. For as long as most of us can remember we have been privileged to hear first-hand from people who suffered atrocities at the hands of the Hitler and the Nazi regime. We attended memorial services, and visited museums, be they in our hometowns, Washington DC, or Israel. I would venture to guess that many of us had the opportunity to travel to... Read more

How Not to Solve Social Issues

January 3, 2017 12:10 pm Published by Leave your thoughts

In recent years, so-called “social issues” have become prominent in the American news cycle. These issues, which include acts of racism performed against minorities, and incidents of sexism directed at members of opposing genders, have received much media attention and have been cited by politicians, celebrities, journalists and common citizens alike as being highly important. Discussion of social issues increased dramatically in the wake of the Trayvon Martin shooting in 2012, the shootings of Eric Garner and Michael Brown in... Read more

Yair Shahak, first place winner of 2016 Adult Chidon, second from left

Yair Shahak: First Place International Chidon HaTanakh Winner

January 3, 2017 12:06 pm Published by Leave your thoughts

Three of the following four clues (translated freely by the author) are referring to a biblical character:   1. Clean turban (tznif tahor)   2. Cake baked on coals and a jug of water (Ugat retzafim vetzapachat mayim)   3. Wadi Cherith (Nachal Krit)   4. A hairy man with a leather belt tied around his waist (Ish ba’al sear ve’ezor or azur be’motnav) Can you figure out (a) who the character is, and (b) which of the four hints... Read more


Changes at YU, Charted

January 3, 2017 12:05 pm Published by Leave your thoughts

As a fourth year student on campus, I remember the good old days of YU. During this bygone bucolic era, Golan was free on Mondays, Glueck elevator doors opened instantaneously, and the Belfer wind tunnel simply didn’t exist. Imagine that, FTOC. At least, I think that’s what I remember; I’m not really sure now. After four years of intense schooling and thumpingly loud street music, it’s possible a neuron or two got fried. So how do we look back objectively... Read more


2016 in Movies

January 3, 2017 12:04 pm Published by Leave your thoughts

Everybody keeps saying how terrible 2016 was. Just today I flipped through a New York Times retrospective of the year in pictures and it made me realize just how many terribly devastating things happened in this year. Brexit, a divisive election, a worsening crisis in Syria, a refugee crisis with no clear resolution…the list goes on. But, that feels so reductionist. Years aren’t solely bad, or solely good. They’re years – filled with good things and bad things. Things that... Read more

Brookdale Menorah Lighting for Chanukah

Beren Campus Lights up 34th Street

January 3, 2017 12:04 pm Published by Leave your thoughts

The Empire State building wasn’t the only thing spreading holiday cheer on 34th Street this year. On Monday, December 26th, the Brookdale Residence Hall of the Beren Campus lit up the night with a window Menorah. Every other year, the Beren Campus Housing office organizes the residents of the building to light up their windows to make a building-sized Menorah – the biggest and brightest in all of Midtown Manhattan. Utilizing garbage bags to block out the light in some... Read more


From the President’s Desk: TAC — Past, Present, and Future

January 3, 2017 12:03 pm Published by Leave your thoughts

My go-to fun fact is that I’m afraid of movies. When I share this irrational fear at a shabbat meal, people are always shocked. They are often confused and proceed to ask me a series of questions. What is there to be afraid of in movies? Are you also scared of TV? (Yes.) Don’t you know it’s contained in a small device and not real? (Really? I never knew.) A movie is a commitment of only few hours that you... Read more