Books: Turbulent Souls By Stephen J. Dubner

By Stephen J. Dubner

The promise of any story about religious conversion is that in observing a soul's journey from one spiritual home to another, we learn something about spirit. This opportunity is doubled in Dubner's case: his Jewish-born parents embraced a fervent Catholicism; decades later Dubner made the same trip in reverse. He capitalizes neatly on the humor, pain and mystery implicit when a father breaks into the song My Yiddische Mama between rosaries only to have his altar-boy son later edit the writings of the Lubavitcher rebbe; and on the "dead parents and overbearing parents...the fears of emptiness and the hopes of bounty"...

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