Unorthodox is the world’s leading Jewish podcast - but you don’t have to be Jewish to love it! Hosted by Mark Oppenheimer, Stephanie Butnick, and Liel Leibovitz of Tablet Magazine, each episode we bring you interesting guests, News of the Jews, and so much more.

Unorthodox is the world’s leading Jewish podcast - but you don’t have to be Jewish to love it! Hosted by Mark Oppenheimer, Stephanie Butnick, and Liel Leibovitz of Tablet Magazine, each episode we bring you interesting guests, News of the Jews, and so much more.


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Unorthodox is the world’s leading Jewish podcast - but you don’t have to be Jewish to love it! Hosted by Mark Oppenheimer, Stephanie Butnick, and Liel Leibovitz of Tablet Magazine, each episode we bring you interesting guests, News of the Jews, and so much more.




Hamming it Up: Ep. 278

This week on Unorthodox, the curious case of the kosher ham. Our Jewish guest is Raviv Ullman, who starred in the early aughts Disney Channel show Phil of the Future and who now hosts the weekly parsha podcast “The Study.” The Israeli-born actor tells us about embracing the rituals of Jewish life during the pandemic, and finding the value of identifying modern themes in ancient Jewish texts, even when those themes might be challenging. Our Gentile of the Week is investigative reporter...


Come Together: Ep. 277

This week on Unorthodox, it’s everyone vs. Bibi. Our Jewish guest is Iranian American writer Roya Hakakian, whose latest book, A Beginner's Guide to America: For the Immigrant and the Curious, paints a portrait of what the new immigrant experience in America is really like. She explains how, in addition to the grand ideals of liberty and opportunity offered in America, the mundane day-to-day elements of American life—like being able to return clothing to a store—remain jaw-droppingly...


Presenting 'The Deal with Nissim Black'

Unorthodox is off this week, but we’re bringing you "The Deal with Nissim Black," a new podcast from our friends over at the Joshua Network, [link out]. The show features Nissim Black, who was featured on our conversion episode last month, in conversation with a wide range of Jewish guests. This episode features Nissim’s interview with former Unorthodox guest Eve Barlow . In this conversation, which was recorded about a month ago, Nissim and Eve get deep into their experiences of being Jews...


On the Grill: Ep. 276

This week on Unorthodox, ceasefire in Israel and chaos on social media. Our Jewish guest this week is former Late Show with Stephen Colbert writer Jen Spyra, who returns to the show to discuss her debut book, a wacky collection of short stories called Big Time. Our Gentile of the week is novelist John Green, whose latest book, The Anthropocene Reviewed, is based on his podcast of the same name, which reviews various facets of our modern lives using a five-star scale. He also tells us about...


Israel: Ep. 275

This week on Unorthodox, we’re doing our best to process—and to help you process—what’s going on in Israel and Gaza. First we talk with Israeli journalist Matti Friedman, whose recent article for Tablet, “Jerusalem of Glue,” highlights the gap between the outward narrative of conflict and the more cohesive day-to-day reality on the ground in the city. He’s been on the show before, talking about his book Spies of No Country: Secret Lives at the Birth of Israel. Then we take you into the bomb...


The Conversion Episode, 2021: Ep. 274

This week on Unorthodox, we’re proud to present our fourth-annual conversion episode. On Shavuot we read the Book of Ruth, which tells the story of the first convert to Judaism. To celebrate Ruth and all the Jews by choice since then, we’re sharing stories of conversion from all over the world. First, an interview with New York Times reporter Nellie Bowles, who has been chronicling her conversion process in her online newsletter, “Chosen by Choice.” Tablet Fellow Nina Lichtenstein describes...


Burning Up: Ep. 273

This week on Unorthodox: Gal Gadot’s pandemic injury. First we speak to Daniel Pollack-Pelzner, the Linfield University professor who was fired after publicizing accusations of sexual misconduct and anti-Semitism regarding the board of trustees and the college president. Then we welcome back one of our favorite Gentiles of the Week, Noreen Malone, who is hosting the fifth season of Slate’s Slow Burn podcast, where she breaks down the lead-up to the second Iraq War. Her question for the hosts...


Hot Takes: Ep. 272

This week on Unorthodox, we’re celebrating Lag B’Omer (and figuring out what, exactly, this holiday is all about). Our first guest is Juliet Litman, podcast host and head of production at the Ringer. She discusses one of her favorite podcasts, the surprisingly Jewish “Table Manners with Jesse Ware,” gives us her take on last season’s Bachelorette bagel drama, and offers her pick for the most Jewish sports team. Then it’s a Jew-Gentile double header: TV producer Amy Solomon, editor of the new...


Winners and Losers: Ep. 271

This week on Unorthodox, Andrew Cuomo’s Jewish “tree houses” and Israel’s wild boars. Our Jewish guest is Devin Gordon, author of the new book “So Many Ways to Lose: The Amazin' True Story of the New York Mets—the Best Worst Team in Sports.” He tells us why Mets fandom is a profound spiritual exercise in perpetual disappointment, and Liel offers his take on why the Mets are a fundamentally Jewish team. Our Gentile of the week is writer, speaker, and activist Julie Lythcott-Haims, author of...


The Decoders: Ep. 270

This week on Unorthodox, Stephanie is out and Liel and Mark are podcasting from their man cave. Our Jewish guest is author Walter Isaacson, known for his biographies of Steve Jobs and Leonardo da Vinci, whose latest book is The Code Breaker Jennifer Doudna, Gene Editing, and the Future of the Human Race. We talk to him about the Jewish implications for the CRISPR gene editing technology, and the way that Jewish history can be mapped onto the history of scientific developments in America over...


Star Treatment: Ep 269

This week on Unorthodox, we’re down to the championship round of our Jewish Name of the Year bracket. Our Jewish guest is Israeli actress and activist Noa Tishby, whose new book is Israel: a Simple Guide to the Most Misunderstood Country on Earth. Tishby, who describes herself as “100% Israeli and 100% American,” tells us about bringing the Israeli show In Treatment to American audiences, her first experience in bridging Israeli and American culture. She also explains how her pro-Israel...


In Good Company: Ep. 268

This week, we’re filling up on matzo and revealing the Final Four competitors in our Jewish Names of the Year bracket. Our first guest is actress Emmanuelle Chriqui, who starred as Sloan in Entourage and Dalia in You Don’t Mess with The Zohan. She tells us about growing up in Canada to Moroccan Jewish parents, her latest TV role, and her involvement with the Black-Jewish Entertainment Alliance . Then, Orthodox sex therapist Bat Sheva Marcus returns to the show talk about her new book, Sex...


The Markisode: Ep. 267

This week, it’s the full Oppenheimer. First, Mark interviews McKay Coppins, a staff writer at The Atlantic who recently wrote an article about the future of Mormonism—“the most American religion”—and America. He talks about his own Mormon faith, confirms Mark’s assessment that Jews and Mormons have a lot in common, and asks how to ready his home to invite kosher-keeping Jewish friends over for a meal. Then, it’s everything you’ll ever need to know about what Jewish law says about pets! Mark...


Passover Prep: Ep. 266

This week, we’re kicking off our Passover celebrations, live from the Oppenheimer home. Mark is joined by four of his children as they sit around the Seder table and wonder where, exactly, all these Passover traditions came from. Helping them along the way are co-hosts Stephanie and Liel, and a near minyan of all-star guests. First, historian and Tablet columnist Jenna Weissman Joselit expounds on the material culture associated with the home-based holiday—Seder plates, matzo covers, and...


Work and Pray: Ep. 265

This week on Unorthodox, Charles Barkley does the hora. Our Jewish guest is Israeli actress Ayelet Zurer, who stars in the new Apple TV+ psychological thriller Losing Alice, Israel’s latest international TV export. Zurer tells us about being part of that other hit Israeli show, Shtisel, and about the unlikely acting role that got her cast by Steven Spielberg in his 2005 film, Munich. Our Gentile of the Week, Father James Martin, joins us again on the show, this time to tell us about his...


Presenting ‘Hearing with Tali Farhadian Weinstein’

This week on Unorthodox, we’re sharing an episode of “Hearing with Tali Farhadian Weinstein,” a podcast from Pushkin Industries. Tali is an Iranian-Jewish prosecutor running for District Attorney in Manhattan, and her show features interviews with policy experts, journalists, and community members. In this episode of Hearing, Tali talks to former Unorthodox guest Rabbi Angela Buchdahl of Manhattan's Central Synagogue about the points of intersection around faith, personal identity, and the...


Reimagining Purim: Ep. 264

This week on Unorthodox, we’re celebrating Purim and breaking the mold. First, Stephanie welcomes her special Purim co-hosts, friends of the show Kylie Unell and Abigail Pogrebin, who help her tell the story of Purim and offer their takes on some of the holiday’s larger themes. Next, Stephanie is joined by Anna Solomon, author of The Book of V., a fictionalized redefining of the story of Vashti. She explains that the binaries we’ve been taught — “that Vashti is wanton, wicked, selfish; and...


Language of Leftovers: Ep. 263

Ep. 263:This week on Unorthodox, we’re waiting for our Israeli Pizza Hut delivery by drone. Our first Jewish guest is actress Jackie Tohn, host of the Netflix cooking competition Best Leftovers Ever! She tells us about understanding the importance of leftovers from a young age as the grandchild of Holocaust survivors, and also about using that real-life identity to inform her character Melrose on the hit Netflix series G.L.O.W. Then we’re joined by linguist Sarah Bunin Benor, who returns to...


Hear Ye, Hear Ye!: Ep. 262

This week on Unorthodox, we’re giving you a taste of some other podcasts we’ve been working on. First, you’ll hear an episode of Liel’s daily Daf Yomi podcast, Take One, featuring special guest Sister Helen Prejean, a passionate advocate against capital punishment, as they discuss a page of Talmud that references the death penalty. Next, you’ll hear Stephanie’s interview with Tablet’s newest podcast hosts, Aimee Friedman and Lisa Sandell, about their show Anxiously. Each week Lisa and Aimee...


Laser Focused: Ep. 261

This week on Unorthodox, we’re firing up our Jewish space lasers. Mark and Liel talk to legendary actor Ed Asner about his latest project, The Tattooed Torah, an animated short about the inspiring journey of a Torah scroll and the little boy who swore to rescue it from the Nazis, about great TV and why they don't make shows like they used to, and about standing up to your political beliefs, even when you have to pay the price. Then Liel talks with author Cambria Gordon about her YA book, The...