Look Out, Wikipedia!

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Look out Wikipedia, an updated Encyclopaedia Judaica will be released soon, according to a recent article in JTA. It has been 30 years since the last edition, and needless to say, a lot has happened in the Jewish world since then. The new edition contains many more entries about Jewish women (not because they weren’t around before the 70’s, but because our culture has shifted its tradition of leaving women out of the “of significance” canon) as well as new spins on old entries, such as the recent popularity of Kabbalah. There is even an entry on JOI’s very own Kerry Olitzky!

The price tag? $1995 (for the print version; an e-version is also available). And while the “smell of leather and all that stuff” is compelling and all, wouldn’t it be great if they offered a free CD Rom and spread the wealth of knowledge to everyone who wants to learn? Perhaps it would even be financially beneficial to them in the end, inspiring people to purchase the hard copy. Cost is a major barrier, especially for those not yet engaged with Jewish life—for any Jewish educational program, let alone one that costs thousands—and if we want Judaism to be accessible, we need to reveal its worth before demanding an entry token.


  1. Funny you should mention Wiki Kabbalah and the sense of providing a CD in the same writing.

    Does the encyclopedia appear every 30 years? 30, Lammed is spelled Lammed Mem Dallet and that formula means teaching/learning. $1995. Likely there was discussion of making it $1999.

    The cabal at Wiki:Kabbalah will not consider anything that isn’t “mystical.”

    Likely the Jewish encyclopedia won’t proscribe any htoughts that are not “above the intellect” but your note has inspired me to check out the old Enc. to see if CYPHER OF GENESIS by Carlo Suarez has been excluded by the cabal.
    I’ll have to go to a university library since Torah and Talmud left Laurel Miss. when the sanctuary was burned the middle of last century. The bricks were given to two black churches under construction. Laurel is the himetown of the Imperial Wizard of the White Knights of the KKK and law enforcement infamous for extra-legal activity iun the causes of “rightousness” and “patriotism.”
    If anyone is interested in the definitions of the Autiot
    please contact me.

    Comment by john shoemaker — March 12, 2008 @ 3:31 am

  2. Outreach? No-One interested in the definitions of the Autiot?

    Comment by john shoemaker — April 25, 2008 @ 2:27 am

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