Adam S. Cohen surveys the history of the illustrated Haggadah from the Middle Ages to today.
At every Passover seder of my childhood, my father Gershon Glausiusz would break the middle matzah, as the Haggadah instructed, place one half in an embroidered bag, and fling the bag over his shoulder, saying, “This is how we carried our possessions when we went into exile.” He was talking of his own deportation…
For many Jews, Passover is about what you can’t eat. Those who observe the holiday’s dietary rules must avoid chametz: wheat, rye, spelt, barley or oats. But because these ingredients—with the exception, sometimes, of oats—also happen to be the primary sources of gluten in our food, the Passover diet and the gluten-free diet actually look a lot alike.
The ground is lurching beneath the feet of European Jews, with anti-Semitism rising up around them. We American Jews are rightly concerned at this alarming turn of events. We fear the spread of this new, especially virulent form of anti-Semitism to our own shores. We feel disgusted but helpless. What can we do?