August 8, 2012 2:54 am at 2:54 am #604471
why has artscroll chosen to publish biographies on certain gedolim while ignoring others? for example they have one on reb moshe and reb yaakov but not on reb shlomo zalmen or rav shach? and if u will tell me that they focus on america that is plain not true as they have published on reb ely lopian and others… and the biggest question is they never wrote anything about reb arron who revolutionized Torah in america.. and last does anyone know of any upcoming biographies on rav elyashiv? someone has pointed out that they have shied away from printing on rav shach because they cant omit his battle against chabad.. which is a weak argument because that was a important part of his life and anyway they have written books with controversy… its high time we have answers why they print what they do.August 8, 2012 3:38 am at 3:38 am #896607
They can’t possible have a biography on every Godol. There are so many Gedolim.
Besides, whether they do or don’t publish on a specific Godol, doesn’t indicate the greatness of that Godol.August 8, 2012 3:51 am at 3:51 am #896608
Quite frankly, it’s a private publishing company and they can do what they want. They don’t owe any of us diddly squat!August 8, 2012 4:09 am at 4:09 am #896609
Meanwhile the newspapers have biographies on all Gedolim, both alive & deceased.
The deceased, their biographies have already been published.
As for the alive, their biographies, are already all ready to go & print, just having to fill in 2 slots:-: 1) Date of death, and 2) age at time of Petiroh.August 8, 2012 4:37 am at 4:37 am #896610
The frum newspapers do NOT prepare obits on living people.August 8, 2012 5:11 am at 5:11 am #896611
Maybe they don’t feel Rav Shach is as big of a gadol as you do. Maybe they couldn’t find enough good material.
The same with Reb Aaron.
Isn’t there already an english book on Reb Shlomo Zalman?August 8, 2012 5:21 am at 5:21 am #896612
Rav Ahron Kotler and Rav Shach and Rav Shlomo Zalman were three of the greatest of the great Gedolim.August 8, 2012 6:02 am at 6:02 am #896613
In your opinion.August 8, 2012 6:07 am at 6:07 am #896614
Shlishi, can you explain how the article on R’ Elyashiv went up so quickly?August 8, 2012 6:14 am at 6:14 am #896615
On the Nachum Segal Show it was announced that there are 2 Rav Elayshiv biographies in the works that should be out by chanukaAugust 8, 2012 6:26 am at 6:26 am #896616
Big deal. They had Admin’s permission.August 9, 2012 1:42 am at 1:42 am #896617
None of these are true biographies anyway. These are “hagiographies” where no unflattering information is published about the person.
Artscroll has been known to exclude information that they deem either irrelevant or contrary to what they consider the “gadlus” of the person. They get away with this by claiming that “these are not meant to be a historical account, but rather to inspire the reader.” I guess that’s what passes as emmess these days.
Only person who published a book that could be considered a real biography got his book banned.August 9, 2012 3:20 am at 3:20 am #896618
crisisoftheweek: That is the claim of the Torah-hating crowd.August 9, 2012 3:59 am at 3:59 am #896619
Choppy: That’s what a lot of very Torah-loving people say as well. I have heard similar statements from a few very prominent Roshei Yeshivah.August 10, 2012 1:26 pm at 1:26 pm #896620
That is a nice tactic to use. Say that anything you disagree with is a viewpoint from “enemies of torah”
Fact remains is that pertinent information that humanizes the Gedolim is left out because it does not fit a certain world view.
As a Chicago resident I was terrified that a similar fate would befall R’Nosson Tzvi Finkel. Luckily his backround was such common knowledge that they couldn’t whitewash it. In fact some people say that he became a godol inspite of his backround…I say it was because of his backround that gave him the perspective to accomplish what he did.
Bottom line, these books give off the impression that people are gedolim from birth rather than it being a journey with human challanges…to publish otherwise at the very least is a lie of ommission and at worst, very dangerous due to it creating an impossible standard.August 10, 2012 3:07 pm at 3:07 pm #896621
Crisisoftheweek- I disagree with your impossible standard assertion(?). It is true that people’s background can form their future, but there are just some Gedolim who are head and shoulders above. So by some, it would just be statements of fact. Though if your point was only that we shouldn’t fool ourselves about our own selves then I would agree. I’m not disagreeing with your view on the Artscroll books though.August 10, 2012 3:18 pm at 3:18 pm #896622
if you are interested in biographies of those gedolim you feel are ignored by artscroll, i have in my home “reb aharon” by rabbi alter pekier published by cis in 1995, “reb shlomo zalman” by rabbi yechiel michel stern (also cis in 1996), “and from jerusalem his word” (about reb s.z. auerbach) by hanoch teller (feldheim 1995) and the only thing i have about reb shach is “in their shadow” volume 1 by rav shlomo lorincz (feldheim 2008). perhaps artscroll felt an additional book on the same people wouldn’t sell well? in any case, these are out there.August 10, 2012 3:23 pm at 3:23 pm #896623
if you are interested in biographies of those gedolim you feel are ignored by artscroll, i have in my home “reb aharon” by rabbi alter pekier published by cis in 1995, “reb shlomo zalman” by rabbi yechiel michel stern (also cis in 1996), “and from jerusalem his word” (about reb s.z. auerbach) by hanoch teller (feldheim 1995) and the only thing i have about reb shach is “in their shadow” volume 1 by rav shlomo lorincz (feldheim 2008). perhaps artscroll felt an additional book on the same people wouldn’t sell well? in any case, these are out there.August 10, 2012 3:37 pm at 3:37 pm #896624
Artscroll is a for profit-business. They make marketing decisions, which presumably are based on what will sell. There is a Jewish folk-tradition (I don’t think you;ll find it in halachic sefarim) that the true Gedolei ha-Dor are secret tzadikkim, who since they are secret never have biographies written about them.August 10, 2012 3:38 pm at 3:38 pm #896625
crisisoftheweek- ” Luckily his backround was such common knowledge that they couldn’t whitewash it. “
If you listened to the ?????? of Rav Nasson Tzvi z”l you would have heard a lot of intentional stress on referencing his modern background. I think most people understand that by hearing that he became who he was with his background we can be inspired to strive to be whatever we want regardless of our own life situations. I don’t think anyone would want to “whitewash” his life story at all.
The rosh hayeshiva’s background may have contributed to who he became. I think it also helped him understand and relate to all yidden, which was part of why he set an amazing example of how to have true ???? ?????.August 10, 2012 3:52 pm at 3:52 pm #896626
If you knew the things whitewashed from other “biographies” it was a reasonable assumption that a similar strategy would be pursued.
But again, because it was such common knowledge and even Rav Nossom himself would talk about it…there was no way for Artscroll to leave it out.August 10, 2012 3:59 pm at 3:59 pm #896627
It’s possible that the families have not given them permission to write the biographies.August 10, 2012 4:12 pm at 4:12 pm #896628
The only biographies I really have any interest in reading are My Uncle the Netziv and The Making of a Godol.August 10, 2012 4:30 pm at 4:30 pm #896629
My assessment was that artscroll particularly wanted rav nasson tzvi’s background in the book. They went to great lengths to put it all in.
What other biographies had similar things deliberately left out? I’m not doubting whether there are, just curious what you’re referring to.August 10, 2012 10:12 pm at 10:12 pm #896630
@Feif Un +1
@Andere Kuk; ommitted information can range from certain gedolim having studied classic literature, or reading newspapers, or being classical music fans.
If you can find a copy of “Making Of A Gadol” (good luck) you will understand what I’m saying.August 10, 2012 10:33 pm at 10:33 pm #896631
Additional omitted information is whether they preferred vanilla or chocolate, how often they made borei pri haeitz, if they were more often indoors or outdoors, and what their preferred climate was.
And that omitted information and the omitted information mentioned by crisisoftheweek adds nothing to our insights into these great men. Hence they are rightfully omitted.August 12, 2012 2:22 am at 2:22 am #896632
Feif Un: What’s wrong with the Hebrew original of My Uncle the Netziv?August 12, 2012 2:44 am at 2:44 am #896633
The Torah Temimah was a scholar, but not an Odom Godol. He was unexceptional in personal righteousness, and his opinions were not considered as coming from a Daas Torah, though he was well respected for his knowledge. His derech halimud and Hashkofo were influenced by untraditional sources and he sometimes said things (some printed in the Torah Temimah) that may not be said. He was resepected as a highly knowledgable person, but not beyond that level. Its not like you cant use the sefer, just take what he says with a grain of salt (especially when it says things like change the girsa, or choshech was cataracts etc), and accept it for the maalos and chesronos that it has.August 12, 2012 3:14 am at 3:14 am #896634
So that’s the new order of the day? When an Adam Gadol says something that you don’t like, he’s just no longer an Adam Gadol? You should go to the Torah Temimah’s Kever and ask Mechilah.August 12, 2012 3:41 am at 3:41 am #896635
Not everyone is an adam godol. Not even every TC or Rav.August 12, 2012 12:35 pm at 12:35 pm #896636
Someone should get permission from Ami and reprint Rabbi Frankfurters editorial from this weeks issue.
If I didn’t know better, I would suggest this topic was started after reading the editorial.August 13, 2012 12:26 am at 12:26 am #896638
i have started this simply after thinking that i feel there is a big absence in the english literature on gedolim that had a bigger impact on the torah worl than others like rav shach, rav shlomo zalmen… as opposed to others which i wont name out of disrespect but of course they are mad chasuvAugust 13, 2012 2:01 pm at 2:01 pm #896639
ItcheSrulik: In my mind, nothing. But apparently some people had issues with the book, because it was banned for a long time. The version available now is an edited version.August 13, 2012 4:15 pm at 4:15 pm #896640
Who are you to speak about giant in Torah like the Torah Temimah?
and who are you to know who is an Adam Gadol. I agree with Sam2. You should be asking the TT for mechila.August 14, 2012 1:56 am at 1:56 am #896641
And you are better at determining who is a godol? If not, how do you think he is one? Ah, you determined it. And, of course, only you can say he is a godol, and no one else can say he is not. Got it.
In any event, he was never considered a godol, even in his lifetime. As I said, he is a talmid chochom. But not every TC is a godol.September 9, 2012 4:37 pm at 4:37 pm #896642
If you are going to copy and paste from the frumteens moderator, you should at least source him.September 10, 2012 2:06 pm at 2:06 pm #896643
The most popular and best-selling biography by Artscroll is “Rebbitzen Kanievsky”, now in it’s 4th printing, over 30,000 books sold.
the question therefore is:
Why aren’t there any more biographies, by Artscroll, on great jewish women??September 10, 2012 4:44 pm at 4:44 pm #896644
Because the biographies on the great Jewish men also cover the great Jewish women (who are their wives.)September 10, 2012 5:02 pm at 5:02 pm #896645
frummy in the tummyParticipant
Really? Are you saying the greatness of a woman is determined by the greatness of her husband? What about the great women who didn’t marry?September 10, 2012 5:19 pm at 5:19 pm #896646
why has artcroll never covered a sefaradi gadol? why have they never even published a sefaradi siddur? because it is not profitable or because artcroll actively promotes a vision of what it believes judiasm should look like and sefaradim do not fit into that vision?September 10, 2012 6:34 pm at 6:34 pm #896647
Sarah Schnierer never marriedSeptember 10, 2012 6:35 pm at 6:35 pm #896648
Frummy: Behind a great man is a great woman.
Besalel: There are simly many more (numerically) Ashkenazim.September 10, 2012 7:11 pm at 7:11 pm #896649
avhaben, I guess that applies to Sara Shenirer, yes?
besalel, yes and though I am probably being uncharitable, Like Degel Hatorah which initially encouraged Shas in Israel, possibly they feel sefardim do belong in their vision, but they should look and act like ashkenazim.September 10, 2012 8:31 pm at 8:31 pm #896650
I challenge you to come up with a less emotional and more common sense answer to your question.September 11, 2012 12:57 pm at 12:57 pm #896652
zahavasdad: that is incorrect. Sarah Schenirer got married, and divorced.September 14, 2012 5:19 pm at 5:19 pm #896653
zahavasdad: I realized that I only wrote half of the truth earlier.
Sarah Schenirer married when she was young, and got divorced. Some say that her husband was not frum enough for her, so she asked for a divorce.
When she was older, she married R’ Yitzchok Landau, a grandson of the Tiferes Shlomo. She was only married to him for a few years before she died from cancer. She had no biological children.
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