Jennifer Lipman

The outbreak of the First World War - as told in the pages of the JC

By Jennifer Lipman, August 1, 2014

Memories of the Russian pogroms and concern over whether war would provoke antisemitism in Britain were at the forefront of Anglo-Jewish minds when the First World War began a century ago this week.

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Review: Ishmael's Oranges

By Jennifer Lipman, July 17, 2014

By Claire Hajaj
Oneworld, £16.99

Reading Claire Hajaj's novel took me back to when, last year, I spent Shavuot in Jerusalem, walking to the Old City at dawn against the cry of the Muslim call to prayer. This is the kind of book that Ishmael's Oranges is, one that conjures up the sights, smells and sounds of the Middle East as you turn the pages.

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Benedict Cumberbatch and the case of the blood libel

By Jennifer Lipman, June 26, 2014

He is known for playing Sherlock Holmes - and it turns out that solving mysteries is a family tradition for Benedict Cumberbatch, whose great-great- grandfather helped thwart a 19th century blood libel.

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TV review: Friday Night Dinner

By Jennifer Lipman, June 19, 2014

There were high hopes for Friday Night Dinner when it began in 2011. After all, here was subject matter rife with comic potential, a talented ensemble including the always excellent Tamsin Greig and, in Robert Popper, a writer who was working off his own experiences of Shabbat meal mayhem in Edgware. What was not to like?

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Facebook at 10 - how much do we still 'like' what it does?

By Jennifer Lipman, April 3, 2014

When you think about it, it comes as little surprise that Facebook was invented by a Jew. A site that encourages gossip, dismisses the need for privacy, and enables faraway relatives to meddle in the lives of the younger generation from anywhere in the world. Who but a Jew could have come up with that?

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Israel needs critical friends

By Jennifer Lipman, February 8, 2014

Oh, for the conviction of those who would boycott Israel. Forget about nuance or anguished deliberation, and bring on kneejerk condemnation the minute anyone creative does anything that suggests they might, vaguely, not dislike Israel.

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They were loyal British Jews and their graves should say it

By Jennifer Lipman, September 25, 2013

"Our loyalty and devotion – richly fully and completely deserved by this blessed land — impels us as Jewish citizens of this country to sacrifice ourselves in its aid at this hour of its need.”

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Brought to book: How my relative captured Auschwitz commandant

By Jennifer Lipman, September 16, 2013

When Thomas Harding phoned up the Imperial War Museum and asked whether, as he had recently been told, his German Jewish great-uncle might have brought one of the highest-ranking Nazi officers to justice, the woman on the other end of the line burst out laughing, doubtless imagining him to be a fantasist.

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From City jungle to zoo keeper

By Jennifer Lipman, July 11, 2013

The city of London is often described as a jungle, but for Daniel Simmonds it clearly was not wild enough.

Mr Simmonds gave up his job as an oil trader — and the six -figure salary that went with it — to become a keeper at London Zoo.

Now he is the focus of The Zoo, a three-part ITV1 fly-on-the-cage documentary about life looking after the animals.

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British families hit by aliyah delay

By Jennifer Lipman, July 11, 2013

British Jews making aliyah this summer are facing delays and confusion because of industrial action by Israeli Foreign Ministry staff and “a total lack of communication” from the Jewish Agency in this country.

Employees at Israeli embassies around the world are into the third month of a dispute about pay and have suspended consular services, including the issuing of visas.

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Look us up on Google — we can help make an observant life easier

By Jennifer Lipman, July 11, 2013

If Google’s tax arrangements are any guide, its London offices may be an illusion. So it is hardly surprising that getting to your desired floor can prove tricky. The lifts into the internet giant’s colourful Tottenham Court Road premises are bafflingly complex, controlled from the outside, like a time machine. But once in, there’s no mistaking where you are.

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He’s not just rock ‘n’ roll — there is also property and Hollywood

By Jennifer Lipman, July 8, 2013

Sitting in a Hampstead cafe stirring his cup of tea, Douglas Villiers comes across as a relatively unassuming 76-year-old. White-haired, well-spoken and genial, he betrays not a trace of his Jewish immigrant lineage or of a life spent mixing with the wealthy, glamorous, and in some cases, infamous.

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Star-studded start for JW3

By Jennifer Lipman, July 5, 2013

Prominent figures from culture and the media, including actress Zoë Wanamaker and former Times editor James Harding, will be welcomed to London’s new Jewish community centre when it opens later this year.

After a decade of anticipation, planning and construction, JW3 will formally open in north-west London’s Finchley Road on September 29.

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Hollywood’s record now, not in the 1930s, is what matters

By Jennifer Lipman, July 5, 2013

It's a plot ready-made for a film classic, one Frank Capra himself could have written. Mr Smith goes to Berlin, perhaps. The major players in a certain industry have for decades cultivated an image of respectability, heroism, of being on the side of the little guy. But then one man exposes them as collaborators; villains working on the side of evil.

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Leonard Cohen moves concert after Jewish Chronicle story

By Jennifer Lipman, July 4, 2013

Could it be that Leonard Cohen is planning to mark the high holy days in the traditional manner this year?

To the delight of his Jewish fans, and in a decision that would no doubt have pleased his talmudic scholar grandfather, the Canadian star has changed the date of his upcoming London concert so that it no longer clashes with Yom Kippur.

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A hit record of Amy’s earlier life and times

By Jennifer Lipman, July 4, 2013

In the two years since her premature death, interest in Amy Winehouse’s music and colourful life has hardly waned. A film is in the works. Her songs still receive plentiful airplay. And she continues to be cited as a cautionary tale on the perils of excess.

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Leonard Cohen reschedules tour dates out of respect for Yom Kippur

By Jennifer Lipman, July 2, 2013

Leonard Cohen has changed the date of two upcoming UK concerts to avoid clashing with the high holy days.

The Canadian Jewish star was due to perform on second night Rosh Hashanah in Leeds, and on Yom Kippur at the O2 in London.

Fans expressed their disappointment in last week's JC, and urged the singer to reschedule.

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Israeli donates funds for Tate Modern revamp

By Jennifer Lipman, July 2, 2013

One of Israel's richest men is to inject millions of pounds into the UK arts scene at a time when the government is cutting public spending on cultural life.

Eyal Ofer, a shipping magnate and property investor said to be worth $6 billion by Forbes, has announced that his family foundation is giving £10 million to the Tate Modern.

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Tigers, tea and Ruby Wax at Hampstead literary festival

By Jennifer Lipman, July 1, 2013

A tiger is unlikely to be on the guest list, but adults and children are invited to afternoon tea with author Judith Kerr at an annual London literary festival in September.

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Leonard Cohen fans upset over Yom Kippur O2 gig

By Jennifer Lipman, June 28, 2013

Hallelujah may be Leonard Cohen’s most famous song but it hardly describes the current mood of the legendary Canadian singer’s Jewish fans.

They are down in the dumps over news that the Jewish-born star’s concert in London has been scheduled for September 14 — the day of Yom Kippur.

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