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This post is not entirely meant to be sarcastic. Earlier today, I finally escaped from the inherent evil that was my forced participation in Hebrew language classes this semester. While I understand that it is a useful way to get to know a culture, and equally useful to know the language of many people on the streets, I am going to have to echo Thomas Paine’s Common Sense:

>>And as this frequent interchange will establish a common interest with every part of the community, they will mutually and naturally support each other, and on this (not on the unmeaning name of king) depends the STRENGTH OF GOVERNMENT, AND THE HAPPINESS OF THE GOVERNED.<<

The "frequent interchange" suggested above, mentioned in terms of governmental forms and the American revolution, also failed to take place when it comes to my class list for this semester. I was subjected to the strength of the "government" (Rothberg's academic administration), and thus made to take 11 credit hours of Hebrew. Don't get me wrong – knowing some Hebrew helped me out a lot, made for some interesting linguistic pondering, and will assist me the next time I sit down and want to read the Torah the original way. In fact, for people who come here seeking to become fluent in Hebrew, the intensive language program is an excellent tool.

Again, don't get me wrong – teaching me one of the official languages of Israel was key to me getting along well and trying to prosper here. At the same time, though, I can also promise you that 11 credit hours' worth of Hebrew did nothing to contribute to the aforementioned "HAPPINESS OF THE GOVERNED," or more specifically, "me and multiple other people." In fact, our class was supposed to be the intensive course for our level of Hebrew, but at 19 people, it was the largest class of any Aleph-level Hebrew course (intense courses are supposed to be the smallest, to encourage additional speaking and listening comprehension).

Long story short, I looked at my schedule, and saw that Hebrew had finished, and I saw that it was good.



  1. Congrats on the no-longer-taking-Hebrew… ness! The image is strangely well chosen.

  2. Hey, you opted to take intensive Hebrew which, if I remember correctly, was an extra 1.5 hours or so per week. đŸ˜‰

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