British Chief Rabbi Jonathan Sacks launched his tenure of office in 1991 with the aim of an inclusivist Decade of Jewish Renewal. Within a few years - fulfilling his installation prediction that 'I will have failures, but I will try again, ather way, ather time' - he was attracting calls, from opponents and supporters, for his resignation and the abolition of his office. Reviewing Sacks' early writings and prouncements on the theme of inclusivism, Persoff demonstrates how, repeatedly, the Chief Rabbi said 'irreconcilable things to different audiences' and how, in the process, he induced his kingmaker and foremost patron to declare of Anglo-Jewry: 'We are in a time warp, and fast becoming an irrelevance in terms of world Jewry'. Citing support from a variety of sources, Ather Way, Ather Time contends that the Chief Rabbinate has indeed reached the end of the road and explores other paths to the leadership of a pluralistic - and, ideally, inclusivist - community.
Now a freelance writer and editor, Meir Persoff edited the London Jewish Chronicle's news, features, arts, Judaism, letters and obituaries sections during a distinguished 40-year career on the paper. He has written extensively on Jewish topics - notably Jewish art and Judaica - and served on the Jewish Book Council and as president of the Israel-Judaica Philatelic Society. A Fellow of the Royal Historical Society and a Life Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts, he holds a London University MA (with distinction) in Hebrew and Jewish Studies, having specialised in modern Jewish history and the history of anti-Semitism, and earned his PhD from Middlesex University, London, for his research into the British Chief Rabbinate's relationship with the non-Orthodox movements. He was appointed a Justice of the Peace for the Middlesex Commission Area in 2001.