Jew­ish Text

The Promise of the Land: A Passover Haggadah

Ellen Bern­stein, Galia Good­man (Illust.)

  • Review
By – March 30, 2020

Not every Hag­gadah comes with an endorse­ment by the envi­ron­men­tal­ist Bill McK­ibben, but this edi­tion cel­e­brates the nat­ur­al world and its sig­nif­i­cance in our lives as we come togeth­er to cel­e­brate Passover. It is intend­ed for both knowl­edge­able and unfa­mil­iar par­tic­i­pants. The tra­di­tion­al text, large­ly in Eng­lish, is print­ed in green; eco­log­i­cal com­men­tary, con­text, and side­bars, empha­siz­ing nature and the land, are print­ed in black and are intend­ed to encour­age dis­cus­sion. An inter­est­ing inclu­sion in this Hag­gadah are the last two vers­es of the Magid (Deuteron­o­my 26:9 – 10), omit­ted in the tra­di­tion­al text: Adonai…gave us this land,” a sig­nif­i­cant mes­sage for this eco­log­i­cal retelling. In a brief dis­cus­sion the author explores the rea­sons for the omis­sion and the impor­tance of their inclu­sion here. The illus­tra­tions by Galia Good­man enrich the texts.

Maron L. Wax­man, retired edi­to­r­i­al direc­tor, spe­cial projects, at the Amer­i­can Muse­um of Nat­ur­al His­to­ry, was also an edi­to­r­i­al direc­tor at Harper­Collins and Book-of-the-Month Club.

Discussion Questions