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Tales of the Havurah
by David Kronfeld View author's profile page

Overview


Tales of the Havurah is about life in the Jewish counterculture in post-1960's Boston. Narrated by a talkative, pot-smoking host named Solomon, the stories -- some funny, some serious -- introduce the reader into an off-beat little universe of educated but not-always-reverent young adults experimenting with creating a new style of close-knit Jewish community while also seeking to forge a meaningful yet contemporary spiritual life. 

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Description


Tales of the Havurah is a kaleidoscope of interrelated stories about life in the Jewish counterculture in post-1960's Boston. Narrated by a talkative, pot-smoking host named Solomon, who is endowed with "a chaotic, eccentric, ironic, poetic, and touchy religious bent," the stories introduce the reader into an off-beat little universe of educated but not-always-reverent young adults experimenting with creating a new style of close-knit Jewish community while also seeking to forge a meaningful yet contemporary spiritual life. Serving up a mixture of stories both funny and serious, Solomon ushers the reader into a big old rambling house that serves as home to Havurat Chaim Community, the heart of Jewish counterculture gatherings. Solomon then spins out tales about his own and his fellow group members' personal lives – their loves and friendships, their inner struggles and searches, and their often unorthodox relationship to Jewish observance. Within these varied stories, the reader encounters wondrous and sensually evocative Friday night dinners, garrulous communal meals, an array of unusual visitors and oddball hangers-on, as well as an unusual perspective on the game of baseball, a private pilgrimage to the Western Wall, and an incongruous visit to the local synagogue, among other stops along the way. Tales of the Havurah captures a particular moment in America, when a rebellious youth culture – influenced by rock music, psychedelic drugs, changing sexual ethics, and eastern philosophies – intersected with traditional Jewish practice, symbols and values, ultimately bringing profound changes to the American Jewish society at large.
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About the author


David Kronfeld was born in Brooklyn and grew up in Flushing, NY. He moved to the Boston area for college and graduate school, during which time for several years he was also a member of Havurat Shalom, an experimental alternative Jewish community. After completing his graduate studies in literature, he spent a year in Paris and Jerusalem, where he wrote Tales of the Havurah. After moving back to New York City, he eventually transitioned into the business world and for over 35 years pursued a successful career in corporate communications and financial public relations. He lives in Manhattan with his wife, Sarah Jacobs, an artist who makes Jewish ritual objects in fabric. They have three grown children.
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Book details

Genre:FICTION

Subgenre:Jewish

Language:English

Pages:448

Format:Paperback

eBook ISBN:9781098302429

Paperback ISBN:9781098302412


Overview


Tales of the Havurah is about life in the Jewish counterculture in post-1960's Boston. Narrated by a talkative, pot-smoking host named Solomon, the stories -- some funny, some serious -- introduce the reader into an off-beat little universe of educated but not-always-reverent young adults experimenting with creating a new style of close-knit Jewish community while also seeking to forge a meaningful yet contemporary spiritual life. 

Read more

Description


Tales of the Havurah is a kaleidoscope of interrelated stories about life in the Jewish counterculture in post-1960's Boston. Narrated by a talkative, pot-smoking host named Solomon, who is endowed with "a chaotic, eccentric, ironic, poetic, and touchy religious bent," the stories introduce the reader into an off-beat little universe of educated but not-always-reverent young adults experimenting with creating a new style of close-knit Jewish community while also seeking to forge a meaningful yet contemporary spiritual life. Serving up a mixture of stories both funny and serious, Solomon ushers the reader into a big old rambling house that serves as home to Havurat Chaim Community, the heart of Jewish counterculture gatherings. Solomon then spins out tales about his own and his fellow group members' personal lives – their loves and friendships, their inner struggles and searches, and their often unorthodox relationship to Jewish observance. Within these varied stories, the reader encounters wondrous and sensually evocative Friday night dinners, garrulous communal meals, an array of unusual visitors and oddball hangers-on, as well as an unusual perspective on the game of baseball, a private pilgrimage to the Western Wall, and an incongruous visit to the local synagogue, among other stops along the way. Tales of the Havurah captures a particular moment in America, when a rebellious youth culture – influenced by rock music, psychedelic drugs, changing sexual ethics, and eastern philosophies – intersected with traditional Jewish practice, symbols and values, ultimately bringing profound changes to the American Jewish society at large.

Read more

About the author


David Kronfeld was born in Brooklyn and grew up in Flushing, NY. He moved to the Boston area for college and graduate school, during which time for several years he was also a member of Havurat Shalom, an experimental alternative Jewish community. After completing his graduate studies in literature, he spent a year in Paris and Jerusalem, where he wrote Tales of the Havurah. After moving back to New York City, he eventually transitioned into the business world and for over 35 years pursued a successful career in corporate communications and financial public relations. He lives in Manhattan with his wife, Sarah Jacobs, an artist who makes Jewish ritual objects in fabric. They have three grown children.
Read more


Book Reviews

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Ira
Tales of the Havurah I had a really good time reading this book. The chapter about Purim is one of the funniest things I have ever read. Ira Salzman Read more
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