May 18 2011

The Tel Aviv Cluster

The following opinion editorial was brought to us from the New York Times’ David Brooks

Jews are a famously accomplished group. They make up 0.2 percent of the world population, but 54 percent of the world chess champions, 27 percent of the Nobel physics laureates and 31 percent of the medicine laureates.

Jews make up 2 percent of the U.S. population, but 21 percent of the Ivy League student bodies, 26 percent of the Kennedy Center honorees, 37 percent of the Academy Award-winning directors, 38 percent of those on a recent Business Week list of leading philanthropists, 51 percent of the Pulitzer Prize winners for nonfiction.

In his book, The Golden Age of Jewish Achievement, Steven L. Pease lists some of the explanations people have given for this record of achievement. The Jewish faith encourages a belief in progress and personal accountability. It is learning-based, not rite-based.

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