Ennobling Ignorance: An Educator's Response

By Jeffrey A. Spitzer

Jewish Family & Life (JFL Media), December 2003

Spitzer objects to Ochs's essay on Jewish sensibilities (in this issue of Sh'ma), claiming that her effort to define and categorize these sensibilities enshrines and ennobles ignorance of the categories of traditional Jewish thought. His objections are both general, in regard to her essay as a whole, as well as specific, in regard to certain of the sensibilities that she chose, some of which he says are so amorphous as to be meaningless as categories that could help with decision-making. Educators should be able to present traditional ethical concepts so that students will learn to express themselves in authentically Jewish language. Even for those for whom the halakha is not determinative, the classical process is still educationally viable, and Jewish moral discourse is a language that needs to be taught and not replaced with a "pidgin Torah.

Topic: Decision Making, Morality, Ethics, Jewish Identity, Education, Values, Jewish Literacy, Identity

Name of Publication: Sh'ma: A Journal of Jewish Ideas

Editor: Berrin, Susan

Volume/Issue: Vol.34/no.606

Page Number(s): 4

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Genre: Article

Coverage: United States

Language: English

Copyright Holder: Publisher

Copyright Information: Download for personal use, freely distribute link

Bibliographic Information:
Spitzer, Jeffrey A. Ennobling Ignorance: An Educator's Response. Sh'ma: A Journal of Jewish Ideas. Jewish Family & Life (JFL Media). December 2003: 4. http://www.bjpa.org/Publications/details.cfm?PublicationID=7891


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