Skip to main content

Ari L. Goldman


Ari L. Goldman

Ari L. Goldman is a professor at the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism and the author of four books, including the best-selling THE SEARCH FOR GOD AT HARVARD.

His most recent book, THE LATE STARTERS ORCHESTRA, was published by Algonquin in June 2014. Publisher’s Weekly named the book one of the top 10 music books for the spring list, calling it a “wise, candid, and inspiring true story about rediscovering your passion.”

Professor Goldman came to Columbia in 1993 after spending 20 years at the New York Times, most of it as a religion writer. At Columbia, Professor Goldman is the director of the Scripps Howard Program in Religion, Journalism and the Spiritual Life.

In addition to the New York Times, his articles have appeared in the Washington Post, Columbia Journalism Review, the New York Jewish Week, the Jerusalem Post and the New York Daily News.

Professor Goldman was born in Hartford, Conn., and was educated at Yeshiva University, Columbia and Harvard. In addition to THE SEARCH FOR GOD AT HARVARD (1991) and THE LATE STARTERS ORCHESTRA (2014), he is author of BEING JEWISH: The Spiritual and Cultural Practice of Judaism Today (2000) and a memoir, LIVING A YEAR OF KADDISH (2003).

In 2010, Goldman wrote a Haggadah commentary for the American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee and the foreword to THE PROPHET'S WIFE, a newly released novel by Rabbi Milton Steinberg.

At Columbia, Goldman teaches the popular “Covering Religion” seminar that in recent years has taken students to Israel, Jordan, Russia, Ukraine, India, Italy and Ireland. Other courses include ”Reporting and Writing I,” the “Master’s Project,” “the Journalism of Death & Dying” and “Covering Ethnic Communities.” He is also on the faculty of Fellowships at Auschwitz for the Study of Professional Ethics [FASPE], a Holocaust education program that takes students on study-tours of Germany and Poland. Through his teaching and his travels, Goldman has taught a whole generation of religion writers. His students have gone on to cover religion at such newspapers as the Miami Herald, the Chicago Tribune, the Baltimore Sun and the Raleigh News & Observer.

Professor Goldman has been a Fulbright Professor in Israel, a Skirball Fellow at Oxford University in England and a scholar-in-residence at Stern College for Women. He has served on the boards of several organizations, including the Jewish Book Council, the Covenant Foundation and Congregation Ramath Orah, an Orthodox synagogue on Manhattan’s Upper West Side.

Professor Goldman is an amateur cellist and plays in the New York Late-Starters String Orchestra. He lives in New York City with his wife, Shira Dicker, and their three children, Adam, Emma and Judah.

Ari L. Goldman

Books by Ari L. Goldman

by Ari L. Goldman - Music, Nonfiction

The Late Starters Orchestra is the bona fide amateur string orchestra where Ari Goldman pursues his lifelong dream of playing the cello. Goldman hadn’t seriously picked up his cello in 25 years, but the Late Starters seemed just the right orchestra for this music lover whose busy life had always gotten in the way of its pursuit. In his memoir, Goldman takes us along to LSO rehearsals and lets us sit in on his son’s Suzuki lessons, where we find out that children do indeed learn differently from adults.