Never a bad time to complain about ArtScroll

There's also this book. I haven't read it yet, but I'm very excited for it.

Here at The Reform Shuckle, I pride myself on always bringing you, my dear readers, the best and latest in not liking ArtScroll.

Today, someone with a blog called “⒜ Ⅎℜℹ℮ℕ∂ﬥⓎ ⓓⓞⓢⓔ ◕∫ ✡” (no, I can’t decipher that either) posted about not liking ArtScroll. She (?) linked to a post of mine, saying, “I really do hate that ArtScroll is under the impression that women need a separate siddur.” Me too, fellow blogosphite, me too.

She also points out a 2007 Jewschool post called “Warning: Artscroll Women’s Siddur,” which includes a lovely lambasting of the ArtScroll women’s siddur by the Jewish Orthodox Feminist Alliance that I had not read before. It’s quite good.

And there’s mention of this, from On the Contrary:

ArtScroll wants to have their cake and eat it, too. They’ve created an entirely new genre, an entirely new custom for women’s prayer, and taken it upon themselves to present complex and disputed issues in a one-sided manner, ignoring age-old customs and halakhic positions, and yet market the thing as though it’s something that your alter bubbedavened from.

Check out the full post about not liking ArtScroll (and about liking Koren, also an important topic around here!)

There hasn’t been anything new at What’s Bothering ArtScroll in ages, but it’s always worth a look–if for the name alone more than anything else!

, , , , , , , , , , , ,

13 Responses to Never a bad time to complain about ArtScroll

  1. BZ December 27, 2010 at 1:47 pm #

    She also points out a 2007 Jewschool post called “Warning: Artscroll Women’s Siddur,” which includes a lovely lambasting of the ArtScroll women’s siddur by the Jewish Orthodox Feminist Alliance that I had not read before. It’s quite good.

    Liar. On July 16, 2009, you commented on that post “Someone just alerted me to this post in my the comments on my post about the new Koren sidur. Where was I when this conversation was going on?!”

    • David A.M. Wilensky December 27, 2010 at 2:11 pm #

      Haha. “Where was I…?” indeed.

      Now, where did I put my brain? It’s gotta be around here somewhere….

  2. BZ December 27, 2010 at 3:04 pm #

    I think the name of the blog is “A Friendly Dose of [Jew]”

    • David A.M. Wilensky December 27, 2010 at 4:19 pm #


    • Laura December 27, 2010 at 11:16 pm #

      Right on.

      Oh, and speaking of the Stone Chumash…the haftorahs are all clumped at the end…! What’s with that?

      • Larry Kaufman December 28, 2010 at 12:34 am #

        The same was true of the first edition of the Plaut (Reform) commentary. In addition, it was not arranged by parshiyot. The pulpit rabbis hated it, and the Revised Edition is arranged by parshiyot, with the haftara juxtaposed.

        The Reform Women’s Torah Commentary omits the haftarot altogether, presumably to avoid in-house competition for use in the pews.

        • BZ December 28, 2010 at 12:46 am #

          Actually, the original Plaut has the haftarot for each of the 5 books of the Torah at the end of each book (as opposed to either having each haftarah after the parashah or having all of them at the end).

  3. Larry Kaufman December 27, 2010 at 3:44 pm #

    Not being into siddurim, other of course than Mishkan T’filah, I’ll stay out of this fray. However, I had occasion last night to visit ArtScroll’s Stone Chumash and was struck by their translation of mamlechet kohanim v’goy kadosh — a kingdom of ministers and a holy nation.

    The commentary “explained” the translation as making clear in a way the conventional kingdom of priests would not that everybody is supposed to be out their spreading the holiness message, not just the priests. I suppose that the ArtScroll message is that we don’t want to mess up our categorization of Kohen, Levi, Yisrael. I see this as a surprising translation if for no other reason than that minister is such a goyish word, goy of course in a sense other than goy kadosh.

    As a side note, I once worked for Irving Stone, benefactor of the Stone Chumash — and have always found it ironic that this underwriter of ArtScroll (he also subsidized the Saperstein Rashi — Saperstein having been his original name) made his billions selling Christmas cards.

  4. canyonwalker December 29, 2010 at 10:45 am #

    You couldn’t decipher the title of her blog? “A Friendly Dose Of Judaism” 😉

    • David A.M. Wilensky December 29, 2010 at 11:02 am #

      I didn’t try that hard. And it’s in like eleven different fonts.


  1. MJ Passages . . . › Do Jewish Women Need a Separate Siddur? - December 27, 2010

    […] Jewish voices are complaining (even Orthodox ones) about Artscroll’s one-sided interpretation … This was written by mjpassages. Posted on Monday, December 27, 2010, at 12:53 pm. Filed under Judaism. Bookmark the permalink. Follow comments here with the RSS feed. Post a comment or leave a trackback. […]

  2. Help me pick a siddur! « Minhag In Progress: Incursions into the Void - October 4, 2011

    […] I end up using when I go to services, mostly, and it’s bearable if not ideal), but there are plenty of things that bother me about it, so I’m not in the market for one of those. I still have a great fondness for my Mishkan […]