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Wed, May 12
01:00PM
Wed, May 12
01:00PM

cooking show

A Taste of Rome's Historic Jewish Cuisine

Rome is home to one of Europe's oldest and most delicious Jewish cuisines. Shaped by centuries of hardship and tightly-bound community, la cucina Ebraica Romana (the Roman Jewish kitchen) is defined by its elegant approach to vegetables, saucy braised meats, love of small and briny fishes, and masterclass level of skill for frying foods in olive oil. Join celebrated cookbook author Leah Koenig for an online cooking demonstration highlighting some of Rome's best dishes. The recipe for concia, a bright and silky marinated zucchini dish, will be made available before the event, so students may pick up ingredients and cook along.


About the Speaker:

Leah Koenig's writing and recipes have appeared in The New York TimesNew York MagazineThe Wall Street JournalThe Washington PostFood & WineEpicuriousFood52, and Tablet, among other publications. Leah is the author of six cookbooks including The Jewish Cookbook (Phaidon, 2019) and Modern Jewish Cooking (Chronicle Books). In addition to writing, Leah also leads cooking demonstrations and workshops around the country and world. She lives in Brooklyn, New York with her husband and two children.

Ticket Info: Free; register at yivo.org/Rome-Jewish-Cuisine for a Zoom link


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cooking show

Thu, May 13
04:00PM
Thu, May 13
04:00PM

conversation

OnJewishStudiesScholarsandTheirPoliticalActivismandPublicEngagement

Modern ideals of scholarly detachment and objectivity have always existed in tension with political and public engagement. In 1895, for example, Theodore Reinach, the President of the Société des études juives in France, wrote: "The Society of Jewish Studies need not concern itself with the present trials of Judaism, however poignant the interest may be. It dwells in the quieter sphere of history, and it is only by dispelling the accumulated errors about ancient Judaism that it can indirectly contribute to rehabilitating or consoling Judaism today.” Magda Teter (Fordham University, NEH Scholar-in-Residence 2020-21), in conversation with Deborah Dash Moore (University of Michigan), will explore the role political concerns and specific events have played not only in the lives of Jewish studies scholars but also in their scholarship.

Ticket Info: Pay what you wish; registration required at /tickets/on-jewish-studies-2021-05-13 to receive a link to the Zoom webinar


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conversation

Wed, May 19
01:00PM
Wed, May 19
01:00PM

lecture

Embodying Liberty: American Jewish Attorneys and the Case for Humanizing Public Charge

In 1891, the United States Congress codified a host of physical and mental conditions that would close America’s gates to hopeful immigrants. Since 1882, this policy—the public charge provision—had functioned as a primary means of restricting immigration. While its commodification of health and pathologization of poverty affected all immigrants, eastern European Jews particularly felt its impact, capturing the attention of American Jewish lawyers. Hannah Zaves-Greene examines the legal advocacy of Max Kohler, Abram Elkus, Simon Wolf, and Louis Marshall, American Jewish attorneys who marshalled their deep knowledge of American jurisprudence to defang the law. Focusing on Kohler’s work, we will examine his pro bono defenses of two young Jewish women, who each—about a decade apart—faced the state’s allegation that they had become medical public charges. As he dealt with local officials and argued before the courts, Kohler meticulously framed his opposition to public charge, articulating his philosophy of American citizenship at the nexus of disability and national belonging.


About the Speaker:

Hannah Zaves-Greene is a doctoral candidate in American Jewish history at New York University’s Department of Hebrew and Judaic Studies. She is currently the Fellow in American Jewish Studies at the YIVO Institute for Jewish Research, and a recipient of the Hadassah-Brandeis Institute Research Award. Her dissertation, Able to Be American: American Jews and the Public Charge Provision in United States Immigration Policy, 1891-1934, explores how American Jewish women and men engaged with discrimination on the basis of health, disability, and gender in federal immigration law and its administration. She has taught at both the New School for Social Research and Cooper Union, and has published articles in both AJS Review and American Jewish History.

Ticket Info: Free; register at yivo.org/Embodying-Liberty for a Zoom link


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lecture

Thu, May 20
12:30PM
Thu, May 20
12:30PM

conversation

At Lunch with Muzzy Rosenblatt

Author and journalist Julie Salamon (Wall Street Journal and NY Times) sits down with influential cultural leaders in the Jewish American Community; we'll hear their thoughts about working in this present moment, current projects, and what they have to say about their Jewish identity. Grab your lunch and tune in for our conversation with Muzzy Rosenblatt, CEO and President of the Bowery Residents’ Committee.

Our Guest This Month
Muzzy Rosenblatt is CEO and President of BRC (the Bowery Residents’ Committee, Inc.), one of the most successful and innovative nonprofits working in service to New Yorkers experiencing homelessness. BRC’s 30 programs with nearly 3,000 units of shelter and housing provide an integrated continuum of comprehensive services to 10,000 individuals it annually serves, offering a caring and effective path from homelessness to home.  In 2017, Muzzy was honored by the Nonprofit Times as one of the country’s Top 50 influential nonprofit leaders. Prior to BRC, Muzzy held several positions in NYC government, including First Deputy Commissioner and Acting Commissioner of the NYC Department of Homeless Services.  A native New Yorker he grew up in Manhattan, attending PS 158 and Hunter College High School, before earning and MPA from NYU Wagner and a BA from Wesleyan University. He now resides in “the hills of the forest” in the county of Queens.

Interviewed By
Julie Salamon is an American author, critic and storyteller. She worked at The Wall Street Journal for five years first as a commodities and banking reporter before spending eleven years as the paper's film critic. Later she became a staff journalist at The New York Times where she was a TV critic and arts reporter. Later she gained fellowships at the MacDowell Colony and became a Kaiser Media Fellow. She has written both fiction and non-fiction books for adults and children-- and produced articles for magazines that include The New Yorker, Vanity Fair, Vogue, Bazaar, and The New Republic. Her books have received wide critical and popular attention, she has just completed "Unlikely Friends," a memoir for Audible Original, scheduled for release in 2021.

Ticket Info: Free; register at forms.office.com for a Zoom link


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conversation

Thu, May 20
01:00PM
Thu, May 20
01:00PM

lecture

Sephardi Thought and Modernity: Rabbi Yosef Knafo’s Struggle for Democratization of Knowledge in Fin de Siècle Essaouira

The intention of this series is to spark the interest in processes of Jewish modernization not exclusively mediated by Europeanization. The questions we will be dealing with are related to non-dichotomic identities, multiplicity and loss of language, colonization, social transformation, and intellectual responses to it. We will approach these questions by looking at Jewish-Arab influences, the Sephardi response to European modernization, the responses of the rabbinic leadership and the work of Sephardi intellectuals.

May 20th: Gabriel Abensour (Hebrew University of Jerusalem): Rabbi Yosef Knafo’s Struggle for Democratization of Knowledge in Fin de Siècle Essaouira

Ticket Info: Free; register at ucalgary.zoom.us for a Zoom link


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lecture

Thu, May 20
07:00PM
Thu, May 20
07:00PM

book talk

A Fortress in Brooklyn: Race, Real Estate and the Making of Hasidic Williamsburg

Nathaniel Deutsch and Michael Casper discuss their new book, which sheds light on the history of one of New York's Hasidic neighborhoods.

Hasidic Williamsburg is famous as one of the most separatist, intensely religious, and politically savvy communities in the entire United States. Less known is how the community survived in one of New York City’s toughest neighborhoods during an era of steep decline, only to later oppose and also participate in the unprecedented gentrification of Williamsburg, Brooklyn.

Nathaniel Deutsch and Michael Casper unravel the fascinating history of how a community of determined Holocaust survivors encountered, shaped, and sometimes fiercely resisted the urban processes that transformed their gritty neighborhood, from white flight and the construction of public housing to rising crime, divestment of city services, and, ultimately, extreme gentrification. By showing how Williamsburg’s Hasidim avoided assimilation, Deutsch and Casper present both a provocative counter-history of American Jewry and a novel look at how race, real estate, and religion intersected in the creation of a quintessential, and yet deeply misunderstood, New York neighborhood.


About the Speakers:

Nathaniel Deutsch is professor of history at the University of California, Santa Cruz.

Michael Casper received his Ph.D. in history from UCLA and has contributed to American Jewish History and the New York Review of Books.

Ticket Info: Free; register at hforms.office.com for a Zoom link


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book talk

Tue, May 25
01:00PM
Tue, May 25
01:00PM

book talk

Salomea Perl & Women Yiddish Prose Writers

Warsaw based writer Salomea Perl was one of the rare women publishing literary Yiddish texts at the same time as the klasikers of Yiddish literature, Sholem Aleichem, Mendele Moykher Sforim and Y. L. Peretz. Ruth Murphy's new translation of Perl's work, The Canvas and other stories, is a cause for celebration and reflection. The last thirty years has seen many previously ignored or lost female authors, like Salomea Perl, finally brought into the Yiddish canon. Join us for a discussion of The Canvas, exploring the rediscovery and translation of her work and placing it into its literary context. Moderated by Rokhl Kafrissen (Tablet Magazine) the conversation will feature translator Ruth Murphy alongside Yiddish scholars Anna Fishman Gonshor and Justin Cammy.

Buy the book.


About the Speakers:

Rokhl Kafrissen is a journalist and playwright in New York City. Her ‘Rokhl’s Golden City’ column began appearing in Tablet in 2017, the only regular feature in the world dedicated to new Yiddish culture in all its iterations. Her op-eds on feminism, sociology and Jewish life appear in newspapers all over the world. She was a 2019-2020 14th Street Y LABA fellow, for which she wrote Shtumer Shabes (Silent Sabbath), a black comedy about the dangers of ethnography and human experimentation.

Ruth Murphy is a published and peer-reviewed professional translator specializing in the research and translation of Yiddish literature, historical documents and yizkor (memorial) books. Murphy’s translations have been featured in the Jewish Review of BooksMetamorphoses, and Pakn Treger. Murphy has also served as a translator for the Ellis Island Discography Project where she transcribed and translated multiple early 20th-century Yiddish songs relating to the Jewish Yiddish-speaking immigrant experience.

Justin Cammy is chair and associate professor of Jewish Studies and World Literatures at Smith College, and senior fellow of the Goldreich Institute for Yiddish at Tel Aviv University. He is the author of the introduction to The Full Pomegranate, a recent volume of Sutzkever poetry translated by Richard Fein. Cammy's own translation of Sutzkever's memoir Vilna Ghetto will appear with McGill-Queens University Press in 2021.

Anna Fishman Gonshor is Faculty Lecturer of Yiddish Studies in the Department of Jewish Studies at McGill University (retired). She has been guest lecturer for several university Yiddish programs and various institutions across North America. As a translator her work includes film, articles for academic publications and archival materials. In addition, she is a longstanding faculty member of the YIVO Uriel Weinreich Summer Program in Yiddish Language, Literature, and Culture.

Ticket Info: Free; register at yivo.org/Salomea-Perl for a Zoom link


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book talk

Tue, May 25
01:30PM
Tue, May 25
01:30PM

book club

LBI Book Club, Vol. XI: Heinrich Heine

For our next two book clubs, held on May 25 and June 29, we are going to read a variety of both prose and poetry by Heinrich Heine. If you wish to attend both sessions, please register for both occurrences of the event on Eventbrite. There is one book to read from, Heinrich Heine: The Harz Journey and Selected Prose. The rest of the readings are provided, free of charge, at the links below and in the sidebar.

We will be reading for our next meeting:

  • From the book: Ideas: The Book of Le Grand (Page 89 of the Penguin Classics edition advertised) and Memoirs (Page 295 in the Penguin Classics edition advertised)
  • The next readings are poems. You need only read the poems that are marked with an X–all are quite short. They can be found here. Finally, please read this poem, Heine's "Lorelei", found here.

These versions have all purposely been chosen by George Prochnik, who will be leading us through Heine's work for the next two sessions.

Author
Heinrich Heine (1797-1856) is perhaps the best known of Germany's poets. Born into a Jewish family in Düsseldorf, he made a name for himself in the world of literature, but he was more than poems and poetry. His life also involved philosophy and what was considered at the time radical political thought. Heine moved to Paris and remained there, exiled from a Germany he both loved and despised.

Guest Scholar
We are happy to have George Prochnik return to us for our next two book club meetings. Prochnik's latest work, published last November, is Heinrich Heine: Writing the Revolution. His biography of of Stefan Zweig, The Impossible Exile: Stefan Zweig at the End of the World, received the National Jewish Book Award for Biography/Memoir in 2014 and was short-listed for the Wingate Prize in the United Kingdom. Prochnik is also the author of In Pursuit of Silence: Listening for Meaning in a World of Noise (2010), and Putnam Camp: Sigmund Freud, James Jackson Putnam, and the Purpose of American Psychology (2006). He has written for The New Yorker, New York Times, Bookforum, and Los Angeles Review of Books, and is editor-at-large for Cabinet magazine.

Where to Purchase the Book
George Prochnik recommends this text for reading the two prose pieces.

Ticket Info: Free; register at eventbrite.com for a Zoom link


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book club

Tue, May 25
04:00PM
Tue, May 25
04:00PM

panel discussion

HearTheirCryUnderstandingtheJewishOrphanExperience

To conclude two years at the Center for Jewish History, the Scholars Working Group “Hear Their Cry:” Understanding the Jewish Orphan Experience presents scholarship from four members on the following topics:

Natalia Aleksiun: Survival Strategies and Jewish Orphans during the Holocaust in Eastern Europe
Joshua C. Andy: Remembrance and Resistance: The Testimony and Memoir of Rachel Pinchsowitz Litwak
Emily Bengels: Rescue of Unaccompanied Children from Vichy France to the US: How Past Struggles Can Inform Present Efforts
Katharina Menschick: The Kindertransports from Austria — Findings from Ten Oral Histories in the Leo Baeck Institute’s Austrian Heritage Collection


About the Speakers:

Natalia Aleksiun, Ph.D., is a Professor of Modern Jewish History at Touro College, Graduate School of Jewish Studies, New York. She has published widely on Polish Jewish issues. She is the author of Where to? The Zionist Movement in Poland, 1944-1950, which appeared in 2002 in Polish, and the co-editor, with Antony Polonsky and Brian Horowitz, of Writing Jewish History in Eastern Europe( 2016). She is currently working on a book about the so-called cadaver affair at European Universities in the 1920s and 1930s and on a project dealing with daily lives of Jews in hiding in Galicia during the Holocaust.

Joshua C. Andy, Ph.D., is an Upper School History Teacher at Winchester Thurston School in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, where he specializes in non-US history and teaches a class entitled “Genocide: A Global History on Crimes Against Humanity.” For the past eight years, he has traveled with and worked as a scholar and historian for Classrooms Without Borders; in that work he has guided students, teachers, and university educators in Holocaust education. Dr. Andy has been a partipant for the past two years in the Scholars Working Group ‘Hear their Cry: Understanding the Jewish Orphan Experience’ at the Center for Jewish History. His latest publication, ‘When Ghosts Roam the Streets: Historical Memory in Starachowice,’ appeared in February 2020 in In Context and describes how one Polish town grapples with its own history and the larger historical narratives of the Holocaust. He earned his BA with honours from Washington & Jefferson College and an MA and Ph.D. from the University of Birmingham (UK).

Emily Bengels is a doctoral candidate at Gratz College in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. She was a JDC Fellow in 2020 and was selected to be part of the USC Shoah Foundation’s Past is Present commemoration of the liberation of Auschwitz and to attend the Yad Vashem Advanced Echoes and Reflections seminar. She leads music for the First Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of Hunterdon County and for Congregation Kehilat Shalom, and teaches in Hunterdon County, NJ.

Katharina Menschick received an MA in history and literature from the CUNY Graduate Center in 2019. After working in the archives of the Leo Baeck Institute in New York, she is now is a research associate at the Arolsen Archives – International Center on Nazi Persecution.

Ticket Info: Pay what you wish; registration required at /tickets/hear-their-cry-2021-05-25 to receive a link to the Zoom webinar


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panel discussion

Thu, May 27
12:00PM
Thu, May 27
12:00PM

two-part lecture series

The Jews of the Caucasus: The Multifaceted History of Kavkazi and Georgian Jews

Part one of a two-part series

Jewish history runs very deep in the Caucasus—an ethnically, linguistically, and religiously diverse region at the crossroads of Europe and Asia. Jewish communities have existed continuously in Georgia, Azerbaijan and the North Caucasus (including Dagestan and Chechnya) for centuries, if not millenia. Join us in exploring the histories and cultures of this region’s oldest Jewish communities. Our first session will focus on Kavkazi Jews (also known as Mountain Jews, Gorsky Jews, or Juhuro), and the second session will highlight the story of Georgian Jews.


About the Speaker:

Born in Uzbekistan and currently based in Seattle, Ruben Shimonov is an educator, community builder, and social entrepreneur with a passion for Jewish diversity. He previously served as Director of Community Engagement and Education at Queens College Hillel. Currently, Ruben is the Founding Executive Director of the Sephardic Mizrahi Q Network, an organization that is building a supportive and much-needed community for LGBTQ+ Sephardic and Mizrahi Jews. He also serves as Vice President of Education & Community Engagement on the young leadership board of the American Sephardi Federation (ASF), Director of Educational Experiences & Programming for the Muslim-Jewish Solidarity Committee, and Director of ASF’s Sephardi House Fellowship—a new year-long learning and enrichment program for college student leaders. He is an alumnus of the COJECO Blueprint and Nahum Goldmann Fellowships for his work in Jewish social innovation, and has been listed among The Jewish Week's "36 Under 36" young Jewish community leaders and changemakers. Ruben has lectured extensively throughout the world on the histories and cultures of various Sephardic and Mizrahi communities. He is also a visual artist specializing in multilingual calligraphy that interweaves Arabic, Hebrew and Persian. He uses his artistry to deepen Muslim-Jewish interfaith learning and community building.

Ticket Info: $10 each session; register at us02web.zoom.us for a Zoom link


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two-part lecture series

Thu, May 27
04:00PM
Thu, May 27
04:00PM

book talk

XTroopTheSecretJewishCommandosofWorldWarII

In June of 1942, amid Third Reich victories everywhere, Winston Churchill and his chief of staff form an unusual plan: a new commando unit made up of Jewish refugees who escaped to Britain. The resulting volunteers are a motley group of intellectuals, artists, and athletes, most from Germany and Austria. Many have been interned as enemy aliens, and have lost their families, their homes—their whole worlds. They will stop at nothing to defeat the Nazis. Trained in counterintelligence and advanced combat, this top-secret unit becomes known as X Troop.

Drawing on extensive original research, including interviews with the last surviving members, author and historian Leah Garrett, Professor and Director of Jewish Studies at Hunter College, follows this unique band of brothers from Germany to England and back again, with stops at British internment camps, the beaches of Normandy, the battlefields of Italy and Holland, and the hellscape of Terezin concentration camp—the scene of one of the most dramatic, untold rescues of the war. For the first time, X Troop: The Secret Jewish Commandos of World War IItells the astonishing story of these secret shock troops and their devastating blows against the Nazis.

This program is funded, in part, by a Humanities New York CARES Grant, with support from the National Endowment for the Humanities and the federal CARES Act, and by public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council. 

Ticket Info: Pay what you wish; registration required at /tickets/x-troop-2021-05-27 to receive a link to the Zoom webinar


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book talk

Wed, Jun 02
04:00PM
Wed, Jun 02
04:00PM

book club

PeopleoftheBookClubPlunderwithauthorMenachemKaiser

Go behind the stories and peer inside the archives at the CJH book discussion, led by Lauren Gilbert, Senior Manager for Public Services at the Center for Jewish History. This session will feature a discussion of Plunder by Menachem Kaiser, the story of the author’s quest to reclaim his family’s apartment building in Poland—and of the astonishing entanglement with Nazi treasure hunters that follows. This debut from Kaiser has received rave reviews and was described by the New York Times as “a twisting and reverberant and consistently enthralling story…a weird story that gets weirder.” We will be joined by the author for a Q&A after the discussion.

Participants will need to obtain their own copy to read before the discussion.

NOTE: This is a book discussion, not a lecture, so space is limited.

Ticket Info: Pay what you wish; register at programs.cjh.org/tickets/people-book-club-2021-06-02 for a Zoom link


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book club

Wed, Jun 02
07:00PM
Wed, Jun 02
07:00PM

concert

To Bigotry No Sanction

A magnificent new cantata, composed by Jonathan Comisar, based on George Washington’s historic Letter to the Hebrew Congregation of Newport, Rhode Island. Commissioned by Congregation Keneseth Israel in the Philadelphia suburb of Elkins Park, PA, the piece embodies touchstones of Jewish and American music in a choral-orchestral setting. The pre-recorded, streamed performance, conducted by Kensho Watanabe, features members of The Philadelphia Orchestra and a multicultural choir representing 17 languages.

The program includes introductory readings by renowned historical interpretive actor Dean Malissa, as “George Washington,” and a post-performance discussion with composer Jonathan Comisar and Congregation Keneseth Israel Rabbi Lance J. Sussman, Ph.D., a professor of American Jewish History. The conversation will be moderated by Emmy Award-winning documentary filmmaker Sam Katz of History Making Productions.

Promotional partners for the June 2nd performance of Comisar’s To Bigotry No Sanction are the Center for Jewish History, the American Society for Jewish Music, YIVO, the American Sephardi Federation, the American Jewish Historical Society, the Leo Baeck Institute, and the Lowell Milken Center for the Music of American Jewish Experience, American Conference of Cantors, the Cantors Assembly, the Debbie Friedman School of Sacred Music, Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion, the American Jewish Archives, and the American Jewish Committee.

Ticket Info: Free; no registration required. To learn more and to watch the event click here


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concert

Thu, Jun 03
12:00PM
Thu, Jun 03
12:00PM

two-part lecture series

The Jews of the Caucasus: The Multifaceted History of Kavkazi and Georgian Jews

Jewish history runs very deep in the Caucasus—an ethnically, linguistically, and religiously diverse region at the crossroads of Europe and Asia. Jewish communities have existed continuously in Georgia, Azerbaijan and the North Caucasus (including Dagestan and Chechnya) for centuries, if not millenia. Join us in exploring the histories and cultures of this region’s oldest Jewish communities. Our first session will focus on Kavkazi Jews (also known as Mountain Jews, Gorsky Jews, or Juhuro), and the second session will highlight the story of Georgian Jews.


About the Speakers:

Part two of a two-part series

Born in Uzbekistan and currently based in Seattle, Ruben Shimonov is an educator, community builder, and social entrepreneur with a passion for Jewish diversity. He previously served as Director of Community Engagement and Education at Queens College Hillel. Currently, Ruben is the Founding Executive Director of the Sephardic Mizrahi Q Network, an organization that is building a supportive and much-needed community for LGBTQ+ Sephardic and Mizrahi Jews. He also serves as Vice President of Education & Community Engagement on the young leadership board of the American Sephardi Federation (ASF), Director of Educational Experiences & Programming for the Muslim-Jewish Solidarity Committee, and Director of ASF’s Sephardi House Fellowship—a new year-long learning and enrichment program for college student leaders. He is an alumnus of the COJECO Blueprint and Nahum Goldmann Fellowships for his work in Jewish social innovation, and has been listed among The Jewish Week's "36 Under 36" young Jewish community leaders and changemakers. Ruben has lectured extensively throughout the world on the histories and cultures of various Sephardic and Mizrahi communities. He is also a visual artist specializing in multilingual calligraphy that interweaves Arabic, Hebrew and Persian. He uses his artistry to deepen Muslim-Jewish interfaith learning and community building.

Ticket Info: $10 each session; register at us02web.zoom.us for a Zoom link


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two-part lecture series

Tue, Jun 08
01:00PM
Tue, Jun 08
01:00PM

concert

Joel Engel: Jewish Folksongs Volume III - Premiere on Facebook and YouTube

Join us for a performance of Joel Engel's Jewish Folksongs Volume III (c. 1920): 10 Yiddish folksongs, dances, and Hasidic nigunim in virtuosic piano arrangements. Together with volumes I and II (featured by YIVO in November 2020), Engel's arrangements were the first classical compositions to feature Yiddish folksongs. His use of Yiddish folk music in his compositions proved to be influential and inspired the Society for Jewish Folk Music and the composers affiliated with it to create a vast oeuvre of similar work. Engel's work also provided a source for a variety of other composers who used Yiddish folksongs in their music including, famously, Prokofiev's Overture on Hebrew Themes, whose second theme is taken from the second song of Volume I from this collection.

This collection of 10 pieces will be performed by pianist Thomas Kotcheff.

About the Performer
Thomas Kotcheff
 (b. 1988) is a Los Angeles based composer and pianist. His music has been described as “truly beautiful and inspired” (icareifyoulisten.com) and “explosive” (Gramophone magazine). His compositions have been performed internationally by The Riot Ensemble, New York Youth Symphony, wild Up, Sandbox Percussion, Trio Appassionata, Argus Quartet, Lyris Quartet, Alinde Quartett, USC Thornton Edge, The Oberlin Contemporary Music Ensemble, HOCKET, Peabody Percussion Group, Latitude 49, and the Aspen Contemporary Ensemble amongst others.

As a new music pianist, Thomas has dedicated himself to commissioning and premiering new piano works. His playing has been described as “dazzling” by Mark Swed of the Los Angeles Times and “outstanding” by Steve Smith of Night after Night. In 2020, Thomas released the world premiere recording of Frederic Rzewski’s 75-minute solo piano work Songs of Insurrection in which Rzewski hailed his performance as “magnificent.” He is the pianist and founding member of the Los Angeles based piano duo HOCKET.

Ticket Info: Free; register at yivo.org/Engel-Volume-III for a Zoom link


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concert

Thu, Jun 10
01:00PM
Thu, Jun 10
01:00PM

lecture

Jewish Anarchist Women 1920-1950: the Politics of Sexuality

Anarchist theory includes the belief in freedom for all - that no one person, nor group of people, should have power over any others; that individuals can best decide how to live (and love). In this presentation Elaine Leeder will discuss eight Jewish women who identified as anarchists, active during the 1920s to 1950s. Through analysis of in-depth interviews Leeder explores the complete sexual freedom that these women sought at a time when conventionality and conformity was the norm. These women attempted to create equality in the public and private spheres, some living communally and raising their children in progressive schools. They also sought to maintain complete equality of the sexes through economic independence and maintaining non-conformist sexual relationships. This talk will place a particular focus on the way that ethnicity played a role in these women’s identities, emphasizing their atheism, while still maintaining Jewish values and traditions.


About the Speaker:

Elaine Leeder is a retired dean and professor at Sonoma State University; she is the author of six books, two of which are being used at universities around the country. Her first book The Gentle General: Rose Pesotta, Anarchist and Labor Organizer, was published by SUNY PRESS. She was the author of a number of articles on Anarchist-Feminism in the 1980s. Currently she works in prisons doing restorative justice facilitating dialogues between victims and those who committed the crimes in California prisons. She is the recipient of the Real Hero Award from the American Red Cross for her work in prisons, is listed in Who’s Who of American Teachers, and Who’s Who in America, and was a visiting scholar at the US Holocaust Memorial Museum.

Ticket Info: Free; register at yivo.org/Jewish-Anarchist-Women for a Zoom link


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lecture

Tue, Jun 15
01:00PM
Tue, Jun 15
01:00PM

lecture

The Lost World of African American Cantors 1915-1953

Histories of Black-Jewish cultural interaction often focus on how Jews adopted and adapted Black vernacular music—ragtime, jazz, swing, R&B, blues—as performers, promoters, managers, club owners, and record labels. The phenomenon of African American musicians who performed Yiddish and cantorial music in and for the Jewish community in theaters, on record, on radio, and in concert between the World Wars deserves such scholarly inquiry. This talk will honor the memory of now forgotten Black cantors – Mendele der Shvartser Khazn, Reb Dovid Kalistrita, Abraham Ben Benjamin Franklin, Thomas LaRue Jones, and Goldye di Shvartse Khaznte, the first known Black woman cantor. This talk by award winning producer, author, and ethnomusicologist Henry Sapoznik will feature dozens of historic graphics, translations of period Yiddish newspaper previews, ads, and reviews, and the playing of the one known 1923 Yiddish and Hebrew recording of Thomas Jones LaRue.


About the Speaker:

Henry Sapoznik is an award winning record and radio producer, author, and ethnomusicologist in the fields of Yiddish and American popular and traditional culture. Sapoznik, a native Yiddish speaker and child of Holocaust survivors, helped jump-start the klezmer “revival” with “Kapelye” in 1979, was the founding director of the YIVO Sound Archives 1982-1995, and created “KlezKamp: The Yiddish Folk Arts Program” in 1985. Sapoznik, a five-time Grammy nominated producer, won the 2002 Peabody award for his 13-part NPR series “The Yiddish Radio Project” the collection of which was acquired by the American Folklife Center of the Library of Congress in 2011.  Sapoznik was also the final on-air host (1990-1995) of the long-running Yiddish radio show “The Forward Hour” on radio station WEVD. Sapoznik’s 2015 reissue of the earliest Yiddish sound recordings, “Attractive Hebrews: The Lambert Yiddish Cylinders 1901-1905,” won the coveted Certificate of Merit from The Association for Recorded Sound Collections. Sapoznik is currently working on a book about African American cantors of the 1920s.

Ticket Info: Free; register at yivo.org/African-American-Cantors for a Zoom link


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lecture

Thu, Jun 17
01:00PM
Thu, Jun 17
01:00PM

lecture

Sephardi Thought and Modernity: Foreign in a Familiar Land - Language and Belonging in the Work of Jacqueline Kahanoff, Albert Memmi and Jacques Derrida

The intention of this series is to spark the interest in processes of Jewish modernization not exclusively mediated by Europeanization. The questions we will be dealing with are related to non-dichotomic identities, multiplicity and loss of language, colonization, social transformation, and intellectual responses to it. We will approach these questions by looking at Jewish-Arab influences, the Sephardi response to European modernization, the responses of the rabbinic leadership and the work of Sephardi intellectuals.

June 17th: Yuval Evri (King’s College London) and Angy Cohen (University of Calgary): Foreign in a familiar land: language and belonging in the work of Jacqueline Kahanoff, Albert Memmi and Jacques Derrida

Ticket Info: Free; register at ucalgary.zoom.us for a Zoom link


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lecture

Wed, Jun 23
04:00PM
Wed, Jun 23
04:00PM

book talk

TheDaringLifeandDangerousTimesofEveAdams

Eve Adams was a rebel. Born Chawa Zloczewer into a Jewish family in Poland, Adams emigrated to the United States in 1912. The young woman took a new name, befriended anarchists, sold radical publications, and ran lesbian- and-gay-friendly speakeasies in Chicago and New York. Then, in 1925, Adams risked all to write and publish a book titled Lesbian Love. In a repressive era, long before today’s gay liberation movement, when American women had just gained the right to vote, Adams’s association with notorious anarchists caught the attention of the young J. Edgar Hoover and the US Bureau of Investigation, leading to her surveillance and arrest. In a case that pitted immigration officials, the New York City police, and a biased informer against her, Adams was convicted of publishing an obscene book and of attempted sex with a policewoman sent to entrap her. Adams was jailed and then deported back to Europe and experienced the Nazis’ reign of terror.

In The Daring Life and Dangerous Times of Eve Adams, acclaimed historian Jonathan Ned Katz has recovered the extraordinary story of an early, daring activist. Drawing on startling evidence, carefully distinguishing fact from fiction, Katz presents the first biography of Adams, and the publisher reprints the long-lost text of Adams’s rare, unique book Lesbian Love.

Program registrants will receive a code for 30% off (print only) valid June 1-July 31.

This program is funded, in part, by a Humanities New York CARES Grant, with support from the National Endowment for the Humanities and the federal CARES Act, and by public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council.

Ticket Info: Pay what you wish; register at programs.cjh.org/tickets/life-of-eve-2021-06-23 for a Zoom link


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book talk

Thu, Jun 24
02:00PM
Thu, Jun 24
02:00PM

conversation

Heinrich Heine: Revolution and Music

In Heinrich Heine, Writing the Revolution, a vividly imagined exploration of Heinrich Heine’s life and work for the Yale Jewish Live Series, author George Prochnik contextualizes Heine’s biography within the different revolutionary political, literary, and philosophical movements of his age. He also explores the insights Heine offers contemporary readers into issues of social justice, exile, and the role of art in nurturing a more equitable society.

Prochnik is also the author of a forthcoming essay on Heine and his relationship to Karl Marx for LBI's Shared History Project. In it, he explores the productive tension between Heine's political commitment to the cause of human freedom and his belief in the paramount importance of aesthetic self-expression.

Alex Ross, author of a recent essay on Heine for the New Yorker will engage Prochnik in a conversation about Heine's revolutionary aesthetics and politics with a special focus the musical settings of the poet's verse that became enduring landmarks of German-language culture.

About the Panelists
George Prochnik
 is the author of Stranger in a Strange Land: Searching for Gershom Scholem and Jerusalem. His previous book, The Impossible Exile: Stefan Zweig at the End of the World, received the 2014 National Jewish Book Award for Biography/Memoir.

Alex Ross has been the music critic of The New Yorker since 1996. He is the author of The Rest Is Noise: Listening to the Twentieth Century (2007), Listen to This (2010), and Wagnerism: Art and Politics in the Shadow of Music (2020). In 2008 he was named a MacArthur Fellow.

Ticket Info: Free; register at lbi.org/events/heinrich-heine-poetry-revolution-and-music/ for a Zoom link


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conversation

Mon, Jul 12
04:00PM
Mon, Jul 12
04:00PM

lecture

OutoftheBoxSnapshotsofaLife-LiveonZoom

David Ludwig Bloch was a deaf Jewish artist from Bavaria who found refuge in Shanghai following his flight from Nazi Europe in 1940. There he joined a population of 20,000 other German and Austrian Jewish refugees, who found themselves living in relative safety in a place they had only imagined. A painter, illustrator, and lithographer, Bloch captured the daily life of Shanghai in the 1940s, a thriving metropolis of rich and poor, city natives, European exiles, and a vast population of Chinese refugees fleeing the Japanese invasion and chronic civil war. Through Bloch’s work, we meet the everyday people of Shanghai—the rickshaw drivers, small business owners, the homeless, and the street beggars—as well as an artist who made a new life for himself in China and then, finally, in the United States..

About the Series
At the Center for Jewish History, there are tens of thousands of boxes in our partners’ archival collections. Boxes filled with photographs, journals, letters, and documents. We take these treasures Out of the Box in our new series. Join us!

Ticket Info: Pay what you wish; register at programs.cjh.org/tickets/out-of-the-box-2021-07-12 for a Zoom link


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Presented by:

lecture