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THE NERVOUS NELLIES IN OUR CLASSROOMS
The latest book on Jewish neurosis raises a worrisome arena for Jewish educators. “Monkey Mind” by Daniel Smith1 is a memoir about the worries, which plagued him from childhood until now, when, as a married adult, he relapses again and again. Moments of calm do furnish his landscape, but there is still the recurrent struggle.
You don’t have to be a Jewish youngster to be subject to the new age of anxiety that is making more nervous nellies out of them. The new age of anxiety is fueled by the technology that keeps them informed and connected, and may drive them crazy. Witness Jason Russell, whose personal Web documentary exposing the horrors of African warlord Joseph Kony went viral. Eight days after the steady stream of comments made him sleepless in San Diego, he was diagnosed with “reactive psychosis,” a temporary insanity. According to Newsweek, everyone is susceptible: “The average teen processes an astounding 3,700 texts a month.”