Benyamin Cohen (born 1975) was the founder and editor of both Jewsweek and American Jewish Life Magazine He is the author of the memoir My Jesus Year: A Rabbi's Son Wanders the Bible Belt in Search of His Own Faith. Publisher's Weekly named it one of the best books of the year, and Cohen received the Georgia Author of the Year Award. He was the founder and editor of the award-winning national magazine American Jewish Life and the online magazine Jewsweek, and he has written for the Huffington Post, the Daily Beast, the Washington Post, and Slate. Prior to that he edited Torah from Dixie, thoughts on the weekly Bible portion, which was later turned into a book by the same name. He is now the content director for the Mother Nature Network, a science and environmental news website.
Jewsweek was an online magazine devoted to covering issues pertinent to young Jews in their 20s and 30s. It was created by Cohen in 2001. It covered a host of subjects, including topical events in the entertainment industry, political world, and within Judaism itself, both as it concerned the United States and Israel. In 2005 Cohen left the venture, which was subsequently reopened under Blue Star Media. Jewsweek ceased operation during 2007.
Cohen’s book My Jesus Year: A Rabbi’s Son Wanders the Bible Belt in Search of Faith is part memoir, part spiritual quest, and part anthropologist’s mission. In Cohen’s book, he seeks to understand his lack of enthusiasm for Orthodox Judaisim in addition to why Christians are so excited about Christianity. Among many adventures, he jumps into the mosh-pit at a Christian rock concert, sees himself on the JumboTron of a Black Baptist service, goes door-to-door with Mormon missionaries, attends a Christian wrestling meet, and spends the day with some monks at a monastery. To Cohen’s surprise, his search for universal answers and truths in the Bible Belt actually makes him a better Jew.
My Jesus Year: A Rabbi’s Son Wanders the Bible Belt in Search of His Own Faith (HarperOne, 2008).
- American Jewish Life Magazine
- Article in The Daily Beast
- Young, Jewish and...Cool
- Bio from HarperCollins website
- Official My Jesus Year Website
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