In a brand new foreword, Rabbi David Wolpe takes a fresh look at this masterpiece of modern fiction, a historical novel set in second century Jerusalem and Antioch that tells the gripping tale of renegade Talmudic sage Elisha ben Abuyah's struggle to reconcile his faith with the allure of Hellenistic culture. His conflict between tradition and modern culture is at once both ancient and very modern. As Wall Street Journal columnist Joseph Epstein writes, "One imagines that in writing As a Driven Leaf Milton Steinberg was writing about his own intellectual conflict over the issuefaith or reason, and in what proportions?that remains fundamental to thoughtful people to this day. The tension that this conflict stirs in a first-class mind in his novel is compelling, and the incisive portrait of the man caught up in it is what gives "As a Driven Leaf" its standing as a masterpiece."
About the Author: Rabbi Milton Steinberg (1903-1950) was a scholar, author, and pulpit rabbi who lead the Park Avenue Synagogue in New York for 16 years. His works include Basic Judaism, The Making of the Modern Jew, and A Partisan Guide to the Jewish Problem. At his death at the age of 47, he left an unfinished manuscript, The Prophet's Wife, which was published in 2010 with a foreword by Ari L. Goldman and commentaries by Harold S. Kushner and Norma Rosen.