Sun, Feb 05
02:00PM
Sun, Feb 05
02:00PM

curator's tour

How Jews Became Citizens: Highlights from the Sid Lapidus Collection – Live Event

What does citizenship mean to you? What are the rights and responsibilities that come with citizenship?

Join curator Ivy Weingram for a one-hour in-person tour in which she addresses these meaningful questions in the special exhibition, How Jews Became Citizens: Highlights from the Sid Lapidus Collection. The Lapidus collection tells the complex, ongoing story of the Jewish people’s path to emancipation—the process through which Jews obtained rights—in Europe, across centuries. Read more about the exhibition  here.

This tour will also be offered on February 16 at 6 pm.

Please note that this tour is not available on Zoom.

The exhibit and program have been made possible by the generous support of Sid and Ruth Lapidus, the National Endowment for the Humanities, the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of the Office of the Governor and the New York State Legislature, and the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council.


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curator's tour

Sun, Feb 05
02:00PM
Sun, Feb 05
02:00PM

yiddish club

YIVO Yiddish Club: Theater and Storytelling With Eleanor Reissa – Live on Zoom

Nu, vilst redn a bisele yidish? An event for Yiddish enthusiasts the world over, the YIVO Yiddish club is an informal monthly gathering to celebrate Mame-loshn. Hosted by Shane Baker, sessions take place in English, and are liberally peppered with Yiddish. Each month Baker is joined by a different guest who discusses their work and a related Yiddish cultural theme. In the spirit of a club, sessions are held as interactive zoom meetings in which participants can see and hear one another. Each session includes ample time for audience questions, group discussion, and, time permitting, knock-down, drag-out arguments. Attendees need not know any Yiddish to attend, though some familiarity with the language is highly recommended.

This session features Eleanor Reissa, a Tony-nominated director; Broadway, film, and television actress; a prize-winning playwright, and an international singing artist. Former artistic director of the Folksbiene Yiddish Theater, a storyteller in English and Yiddish, she has sung in every major musical venue in New York and in festivals around the world. Current film/tv includes THE PLOT AGAINST AMERICA, DEAD CITY (a sequel to THE WALKING DEAD), and THE ZWEIFLERS (a new German television series). She hosts Yale University’s podcast: “Those Who Were There: Voices from the Holocaust” and is the audio guide narrator of “What Hate Can Do”, the latest exhibit at the Museum of Jewish Heritage. Her book, The Letters Project: A Daughter’s Journey was recently published by Post Hill Press.


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yiddish club

Tue, Jan 31
02:00PM
Tue, Jan 31
02:00PM

conversation

Lore Segal and Uri Berliner in Conversation – Live on Zoom

Lore Segal was born in Vienna in 1928 and was educated at the University of London. A finalist for the 2008 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction, Segal has won a Guggenheim Fellowship, two PEN/O. Henry Awards, the American Academy and Institute of Arts and Letters Award, and a fellowship at the Dorothy and Lewis B. Cullman Center for Scholars and Writers. Much of her work has explored the experience of displacement and immigration, such as the novel Other People’s Houses (1964), based on her experience as a Kindertransport refugee, or Her First American (1985) a love story between a refugee from Hitler’s Europe and a witty, hard-drinking, black intellectual. NPR Correspondent Uri Berliner will engage Segal in a conversation about life, literature, and history.

About the Speakers
Uri Berliner is the Senior Business Editor at NPR, where he edits and reports on economics, technology and finance. He provides analysis, context and clarity to breaking news and complex issues. Berliner helped to build Planet Money, one of the most popular podcasts in the country.

Berliner's work at NPR has been recognized with a Peabody Award, a Loeb Award, Edward R. Murrow Award, a Society of Professional Journalists New America Award, and has been twice honored by the RTDNA. He was the recipient of a Nieman Fellowship at Harvard University. A New Yorker, he was educated at Sarah Lawrence College and Columbia University.

Berliner joined NPR after more than a decade as a print newspaper reporter in California where he covered scams, gangs, military issues, and the border. As a newspaper reporter, his feature writing and investigative reporting earned numerous awards. He started his journalism career at the East Hampton (N.Y) Star.

Lore Segal was ten years old when she left her native Vienna and went to England, where she lived with a number of foster families. After receiving her B.A. English Honors from the University of London in 1948, she went to live in the Dominican Republic until her American quota allowed her to come to New York in May 1951. Between 1968 and 1996 she taught writing at Columbia University’s School of the Arts, Princeton, Bennington College, Sarah Lawrence, the University of Illinois at Chicago, and Ohio State University from which she retired in 1996.

Segal has worked as novelist, essayist, translator, and writer of children’s books. She has received the Clifton Fadiman Medal, a Guggenheim Fellowship, the Harold U. Ribalow Prize, and a grant from the National Endowments for the Arts and Humanities. Her reviews have appeared in the New York Times Book Review and her stories in the The New Yorker. Her short story “The Reverse Bug” was included in Best American Short Stories, 1989 and was a 1990 O. Henry Prize-winner. Her stories “Other People’s Deaths” and “Making Good” were included in the O. Henry Prize Stories in 2008 and 2010, respectively.

Segal’s novels include Other People’s Houses, which was first serialized in The New YorkerLucinella, republished in 2009 by Melville House; and Her First American, which won an award from the American Academy and Institute of Arts and Letters.


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conversation

Mon, Jan 30
12:00PM
Mon, Jan 30
12:00PM

lecture

The Holocaust in the European Context – Live on Zoom

In this talk, Susanne Heim (CJH Short-Term Research Fellow) introduces The Persecution and Murder of European Jews by Nazi Germany 1933-1945, a new, remarkable 16-volume collection of 5,000 documents providing a multifaceted look at the lives of Jews under Nazi rule. The series includes private testimonies of the victims as well as documents of the perpetrators and reports of bystanders.

About the Speaker
Susanne Heim is a historian and political scientist. She obtained her PhD and her habilitation from the Free University Berlin and, from 2005 to 2020, she coordinated this 16-volume collection. Her research topics include the history of Jewish emigration from Nazi Germany and migration and population policy in the 20th century. Her current project deals with the international refugee policy and forced emigration of Jews from Nazi-dominated Europe. Dr. Heim was a CJH Research Fellow in fall 2022.


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lecture

Sun, Jan 29
12:00PM
Sun, Jan 29
12:00PM

lecture

Warriors and Mystics: Notable Figures in Iranian Jewish History – Live on Zoom

Please choose one webinar (either January 22 or January 29) to attend.

Iran's Jewish community is one of the oldest diaspora communities in the world. But is there more to those 2700 years than Queen Esther and the Islamic Revolution? This talk examines the lesser-known parts of Iran's Jewish History, a vast story of prophets, autonomous nations, divergent sects, epic poetry, and political intrigue. Through the music, languages, foods, writings, traditions, and stories of two millennia, along with their ties to neighboring and faraway communities, the Jews of Iran have forged a culture at once Persian and Jewish, with traditions and aesthetics uniquely their own. In this two-part series, we will explore notable personalities in this rich history, from over 1,500 years ago and more recently.

About the Speaker
Alan Niku is a filmmaker, writer, and scholar of Mizrahi culture from San Luis Obispo, California, based in Los Angeles. A native speaker of Persian, he spends his time learning related Jewish languages, deciphering Judeo-Persian manuscripts, and interviewing community members about their stories. He is also a musician and an amateur chef, teaches history and Jewish heritage at various levels, and seeks to educate the world about the underrepresented cultures of the Middle East through his writing and films.


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lecture

Sun, Jan 29
02:00PM
Sun, Jan 29
02:00PM

celebration

Kontar i Kantar: The 6th Annual New York Ladino Day – In-person event and livestreamed on Zoom

Curated by Jane Mushabac and Bryan Kirschen

Featuring

  • Tony- and Grammy-nominated Broadway star Shoshana Bean
  • A conversation with Michael Frank, author of One Hundred Saturdays: Stella Levi and the Search for a Lost World
  • Judith Cohen, Sing Me a Story, on Sephardic Romansas
  • Musical Finale, Susana Behar and guitarist Michel Gonzalez

Ladino is a bridge to many cultures. A variety of Spanish, it has absorbed words from Hebrew, Turkish, Arabic, French, Greek, and Portuguese. The mother tongue of Jews in the Ottoman Empire for 500 years, Ladino became the home language of Sephardim worldwide. While the number of Ladino speakers has sharply declined, distinguished Ladino Day programs like ours celebrate a vibrant language and heritage. These programs are, as Aviya Kushner has written in the Forward, “Why Ladino Will Rise Again.”

Since 2013, these programs have been held around the world to honor Ladino, also known as Judeo-Spanish. January 29th marks New York’s 6th Annual Ladino Day hosted by the American Sephardi Federation.


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celebration

Thu, Jan 26
01:00PM
Thu, Jan 26
01:00PM

lecture

Good Goy, Bad Goy: the Portrayal of Gentiles in Sketches From the London Yiddish Press – Live on Zoom

Gentiles often appeared in the news sections of the London Yiddish press, and sometimes they also appeared in the regular “feuilleton” section in character sketches and fiction, stories and scenes from immigrant East-End Jewish life. Many of these portrayals were humorous local scenarios and imagined tales. This talk will look at a broad section of how and where Gentile characters appear and their relationship to the Jewish immigrant.

Gentiles fix cars and do physical chores for the hapless immigrant. The wily immigrant hoodwinks the Gentile recruiting officers during the First World War. The stern Gentile gatekeeper of British government politics refuses access to the naïve immigrant wanting to help. The paternalistic English police officer gives directions to parts of London never before visited by an East-End immigrant. A proud fascist blackshirt is confused when he sees his respected Jewish neighbors in a strident communist counter-demonstration. Yet the word goy is also used by Jews describing each other: skipping the bus fare, not sharing their Yiddish newspaper, or being rude to their neighbor.

About the Speaker
Vivi Lachs is a historian of London’s Jewish East End, a Yiddishist, and a performer. She is a Research Fellow at Queen Mary University of London working on the project Making and Remaking the Jewish East End. Her book Whitechapel Noise draws new historical detail from London Yiddish poetry and song. In 2019, she was a Yiddish Book Centre translation fellow, which culminated in her latest book London Yiddishtown – a selection of stories translated from the Yiddish from the 1930s and 1940s and incorporating a new history of London’s Yiddish writers of that period. Lachs records London Yiddish songs with the bands Klezmer Klub and Katsha’nes, co-runs the Yiddish Open Mic Cafe and the Great Yiddish Parade – a marching band bringing Yiddish songs of protest back onto the streets. She also leads East End tours.


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lecture

Thu, Jan 26
06:15PM
Thu, Jan 26
06:15PM

discussion

Unmasking Antisemitism: A Panel Discussion in Conjunction with the Exhibition #FakeImages at the United Nations

Unmasking Antisemitism

6:15 pm - Welcome Reception
7:00 pm - Panel Discussion

Widely regarded as the “oldest hatred,” antisemitism is experiencing an alarming revival in the contemporary world.  The Center for Jewish History is proud to host a panel discussion on antisemitism, past and present, in conjunction with the new exhibition at the United Nations, #Fake Images: Unmask the Dangers of Stereotypes.

Join historians Dr. Jonathan Brent (YIVO Institute for Jewish Research), Jason Guberman (American Sephardi Federation), Dr. Uffa Jensen (Technical University Berlin), Dr. Pamela Nadell (American University), Dr. Gavriel Rosenfeld (Center for Jewish History and Fairfield University), and Dr. Veerle Vanden Daelen (Kazerne Dossin), as they critically analyze the origin and weaponization of antisemitic ideas, conspiracies, and images from the 19th century to the present.

A wine and cheese reception, including welcome remarks by Tracey Petersen, Manager: The Holocaust and the United Nations Outreach Programme, the Consulate General of Belgium and the Consulate General of Germany in New York, will begin at 6:15 pm. The program will start promptly at 7:00 pm. A dessert reception will follow the end of the program at 8:30 pm.

The exhibition is organized by the Holocaust and United Nations Outreach Program, Department of Global Communications, as part of the program of events marking the International Day of Commemoration in memory of the victims of the Holocaust. The exhibition is curated by Kazerne Dossin: Memorial, Museum and Research Centre on Holocaust and Human Rights (Mechelen, Belgium)and supported by the Arthur Langerman Archive for the Study of Visual Antisemitism Foundation (Berlin), the Center for Research on Antisemitism at the Technical University of Berlin, and the Belgian Ministry of Foreign Affairs.  The panel discussion is a joint initiative of the Center for Jewish History, the Leo Baeck Institute, the American Jewish Historical Society, the American Sephardi Federation, and the YIVO Institute for Jewish Research.


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discussion

Thu, Jan 26
07:30PM
Thu, Jan 26
07:30PM

book talk

City of Song: Music and the Making of Modern Jerusalem – In-Person Book Talk

The Jewish Music Forum and the YIVO Institute for Jewish Research are proud to present a presentation by Dr. Michael A. Figueroa, author of the acclaimed book, City of Song: Music and the Making of Modern Jerusalem (Oxford University Press, 2022). In this presentation, Dr. Figueroa will present on an important aspect of his research, titled: "'The iron skeleton is silent like my comrade': Israeli Songs as War Memorials."


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book talk

Wed, Jan 25
07:00PM
Wed, Jan 25
07:00PM

panel discussion

700 Years of Vilnius, a City of Translation – Live Event & Livestreamed on Zoom

The history and geography of Vilnius are marked by linguistic pluralism, cultural variations, territorial rearrangements, and human losses that make temporal correspondence and spatial continuity hard to decipher. Since the first written records of the city in 1323, Vilnius was put on the path of translation. The existence of many languages and the sense of discontinuity point to diversity and conflict, but translation unravels the tensions, interactions, rivalries, or convergences among different points of views, knowledge and experiences of the place.

In the context of Vilnius, translation is often an outcome or response to erasure. Still, as Czeslaw Milosz pointed out, “everything would be fine if language did not deceive us finding / different names for the same thing in different times and places.” In one of his poems dedicated to his hometown, the poet construes Wilno as a city without name, underpinning its untranslatable – ‘unexpressed, untold’ – character. On the other hand, for Moyshe Kulbak, the Jewish city opens up as “the dream of a cabbalist” with a “thousand narrow doors into the universe.” Contrastingly, Avrom Sutzkver, in his threnody to Vilna, makes the town omnipresent with ‘all the cities [being transformed] into your image.’ As an act of creation, translation offers a possibility of entering Vilnius from an unknown territory; simultaneously, it frames the city within ‘unfamiliar tongues.’

In commemorating 700 years of the founding of Vilnius, Laimonas Briedis will give a presentation about the city as a form of translation, from poetic imagery and visual records to tangible geography and memory fragments. Briedis’s presentation will be followed by a discussion moderated by Jonathan Brent in which Briedis will be joined by Laima LauckaiteIrena Grudzinska Gross, and David Roskies.

About the Participants
Laimonas Briedis is a writer and scholar of the history, literature and geographical imagination of Vilnius, Lithuania. A native of Vilnius, he has lived for most of his adult life in Vancouver (Canada) where he completed a doctoral degree in cultural geography at the University of British Columbia. His creative output stretches from charting a GIS anchored digital map of the multilingual literature of Vilnius to examining the ramifications of being bi-local; placing questions related to belonging, migration, the diaspora, translation, poetic vision and memory at the core of his work. He is the author of Vilnius: City of Strangers, reviewed by The Economist as being a “subtle and evocative book,” where “vanished civilizations and lost empires leave a city stalked by horror and steeped in wonder.” The book has been translated into several languages, including German, Chinese, Russian and Portuguese (Brazil). Laimonas is the global ambassador for the 700-year anniversary of the founding of Vilnius.

Jonathan Brent is the Executive Director of the YIVO Institute for Jewish Research in New York City. From 1991 to 2009 he was Editorial Director and Associate Director of Yale Press. He is the founder of the world acclaimed Annals of Communism series, which he established at Yale Press in 1991. Brent is the co-author of Stalin’s Last Crime: The Plot Against the Jewish Doctors, 1948-1953 (Harper-Collins, 2003) and Inside the Stalin Archives (Atlas Books, 2008). He is now working on a biography of the Soviet-Jewish writer Isaac Babel. Brent teaches history and literature at Bard College.

Laima Lauckaite, art historian and curator of exhibitions, lives in Vilnius and is currently the leading researcher at the Lithuanian Culture Research Institute. Educated at Vilnius Art Institute (MA), University of Moscow (PhD), and Zentralinstitut für Kunstgeschichte, Munich (Postdoc), her research focuses on the art history of Vilnius during the early 20th century. She initiated a study on the multicultural artistic scene of the city revealing activities of Polish, Jewish, Lithuanian, and Russian artists. Lauckaite is the author of the books: Art in Vilnius 1900-1915 (Biennial Book Prize of the Association for the Advancement of Baltic Studies in 2009), Art in Vilnius during the First World War (in Lithuanian), Rafael Chwoles: the Search for Jerusalem, and albums on iconography Vilnius. Topophilia (vol. I, II). She is the curator of the exhibition “Vilnius Forever. Dialog of Artworks and Guides to the City,” at the TARTLE Art Center in Vilnius in partnership with YIVO.

Irena Grudzinska Gross emigrated from her native Poland after student unrest of 1968. She studied in Poland, Italy and in the United States; she received her PhD from Columbia University in 1982. She taught East-Central European history and literature at Emory, New York, Boston and Princeton universities. Her books include Golden Harvest with Jan T. Gross, Oxford University Press, 2012, Czeslaw Milosz and Joseph Brodsky: Fellowship of Poets, Yale University Press, 2009, and The Scar of Revolution: Tocqueville, Custine and the Romantic Imagination, University of California Press, 1995. She edited books on literature and the transformation process in Central and Eastern Europe and published numerous book chapters and articles on these subjects in the international press and periodicals. Between 1998-2003, she was responsible for the East-Central European Program at the Ford Foundation.

David G. Roskies is the Sol and Evelyn Henkind Chair emeritus in Yiddish Literature and Culture and a professor emeritus of Jewish literature at The Jewish Theological Seminary. He also served as the Naomi Prawer Kadar Visiting Professor of Yiddish Studies at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. Dr. Roskies was elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in 2012. Dr. Roskies is a cultural historian of Eastern European Jewry. A prolific author, editor, and scholar, he has published nine books and received numerous awards. In 1981, Dr. Roskies cofounded with Dr. Alan Mintz Prooftexts: A Journal of Jewish Literary History, and served for seventeen years as editor in chief of the New Yiddish Library series, published by Yale University Press. A native of Montreal, Canada, and a product of its Yiddish secular schools, Dr. Roskies was educated at Brandeis University, where he received his doctorate in 1975.


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panel discussion

Mon, Jan 23
12:00PM
Mon, Jan 23
12:00PM

lecture

1925-1979: How Iran's Jews Flourished & Helped Iran Prosper – Live on Zoom

Join us as we welcome Iranian Jewish journalist and activist Karmel Melamed who will share some special historical insights into how the Jews of Iran flourished and helped advance the growth of their ancient homeland during a large part of the 20th century. From the arts to academia, international trade, industry to technology, medicine to engineering, the Jews of Iran were a critical part of Iran’s successful development for more than 50 years in the modern era. While their forced exile from Iran due to the rise of the Islamic regime devastated many of their lives, we will also look at how Iranian Jews are continuing their remarkable advancements today while living in the United States and Israel.

About the Speaker
Karmel Melamed is an award winning internationally published journalist, activist and attorney based in Los Angeles. Born in Iran, Melamed fled that country at a young age after the Iranian revolution with his family to escape persecution from Iran’s newly established Islamic regime. As a journalist since 2000, he has given a new voice to the successful Iranian Jewish community living in the United States as well as having covered issues relating to Iran and the Middle East. His articles have appeared in the Jerusalem Post, NewsMax.com, Jewish News Syndicate (JNS), Times of Israel, the Forward, Orange County Register and the L.A. Jewish Journal, as well as a whole host of other prominent online publications.

Fluent in Farsi language, Melamed has successfully interviewed various influential leaders and newsmakers in the U.S. and in the Middle East. In 2004 he landed an exclusive interview with Empress of Iran, Farah Pahlavi. Likewise, he frequently appears on various radio and television news programs, including Persian language news media outlets. He also authors a blog on the Times of Israel news site.

As an Iranian American journalist, Melamed is frequently invited to speak at various venues across the U.S. about the human rights violation.


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lecture

Mon, Jan 23
01:00PM
Mon, Jan 23
01:00PM

book launch

German-Jewish Studies: Next Generations – Live on Zoom

As a field, German-Jewish Studies emphasizes the dangers of nationalism, monoculturalism, and ethnocentrism, while making room for multilingual and transnational perspectives with questions surrounding migration, refugees, exile, and precarity. Focusing on the relevance and utility of the field for the twenty-first century, German-Jewish Studies: Next Generations explores why studying and applying German-Jewish history and culture must evolve and be given further attention today. The volume brings together an interdisciplinary range of scholars to reconsider the history of antisemitism—as well as intersections of antisemitism with racism and colonialism—and how connections to German Jews shed light on the continuities, ruptures, anxieties, and possible futures of German-speaking Jews and their legacies.

Schedule
Greetings: Dr. Markus Krah
Chair: Prof. Guy Miron
Commentators: Prof. Abigail Gillman, Prof. Paul Lerner
Respondents: Dr. Aya Elyada, Prof. Kerry Wallach

Reviews
German-Jewish Studies makes a valuable contribution to the field. The chapters are of a high standard across the board and the volume will help students and academics get a good sense of how things in the field of German-Jewish studies stand: how healthy it is, where its strengths lie, and where gaps have merged that new research and perspectives could fill.”  Christian Bailey, Purchase College

“It is an original and impressive interdisciplinary collection of essays that are a window to the future in German-Jewish Studies.”  Frank R. Nicosia, University of Vermont


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book launch

Mon, Jan 23
07:00PM
Mon, Jan 23
07:00PM

film and discussion

Screening Selections from “The U.S. and the Holocaust” – In-person event

Join us in person at the Center for Jewish History for a screening of selections from the documentary series by Ken Burns, Lynn Novick, & Sarah Botstein. Join us after the screening for a Q&A with Lynn Novick and Sarah Botstein.

The U.S. and the Holocaust is a three-part, six-hour series that examines America’s response to one of the greatest humanitarian crises of the twentieth century. Americans consider themselves a “nation of immigrants,” but as the catastrophe of the Holocaust unfolded in Europe, the United States proved unwilling to open its doors to more than a fraction of the hundreds of thousands of desperate people seeking refuge. Through riveting firsthand testimony of witnesses and survivors who as children endured persecution, violence and flight as their families tried to escape Hitler, this series delves deeply into the tragic human consequences of public indifference, bureaucratic red tape and restrictive quota laws in America. Did the nation fail to live up to its ideals? This is a history to be reckoned with.


Presented by:

film and discussion

Sun, Jan 22
12:00PM
Sun, Jan 22
12:00PM

lecture

Warriors and Mystics: Notable Figures in Iranian Jewish History – Live on Zoom

Please choose one webinar (either January 22 or January 29) to attend.

Iran's Jewish community is one of the oldest diaspora communities in the world. But is there more to those 2700 years than Queen Esther and the Islamic Revolution? This talk examines the lesser-known parts of Iran's Jewish History, a vast story of prophets, autonomous nations, divergent sects, epic poetry, and political intrigue. Through the music, languages, foods, writings, traditions, and stories of two millennia, along with their ties to neighboring and faraway communities, the Jews of Iran have forged a culture at once Persian and Jewish, with traditions and aesthetics uniquely their own. In this two-part series, we will explore notable personalities in this rich history, from over 1,500 years ago and more recently.

About the Speaker
Alan Niku is a filmmaker, writer, and scholar of Mizrahi culture from San Luis Obispo, California, based in Los Angeles. A native speaker of Persian, he spends his time learning related Jewish languages, deciphering Judeo-Persian manuscripts, and interviewing community members about their stories. He is also a musician and an amateur chef, teaches history and Jewish heritage at various levels, and seeks to educate the world about the underrepresented cultures of the Middle East through his writing and films.


Presented by:

lecture

Thu, Jan 19
12:30PM
Thu, Jan 19
12:30PM

conversation

At Lunch with Michael Kimmelman – Live on Zoom

Julie Salamon sits down with NY Timesreporter and architecture critic Michael Kimmelman. Michael is the architecture critic for The New York Times and has written about public housing, public space, landscape architecture, community development and equity, infrastructure and urban design. He has reported from more than 40 countries and twice been a Pulitzer Prize finalist, most recently in 2018 for his series on climate change and global cities. In March 2014, he was awarded the Brendan Gill Prize for his “insightful candor and continuous scrutiny of New York’s architectural environment” that is “journalism at its finest.


Presented by:

conversation

Thu, Jan 19
07:00PM
Thu, Jan 19
07:00PM

lecture

Citizen, Subject, National, Protégé: Jewish Belonging in North Africa and the Middle East, 1815-1914 – In-person Event

In-person Event

In this talk, Jessica Marglin (University of Southern California) will trace the modern history of Jewish citizenship in North Africa and the Middle East, including nationality legislation; the abolition of dhimmistatus; the status of Jews in European colonies; and their citizenship in independent nation-states.

About the Speaker
Jessica Marglin is Associate Professor of Religion, Law, and History, and the Ruth Ziegler Early Career Chair in Jewish Studies at the University of Southern California.  She earned her PhD from Princeton and her BA and MA from Harvard.  Her research focuses on the history of Jews and Muslims in North Africa and the Mediterranean, with a particular emphasis on law.  She is the author of Across Legal Lines: Jews and Muslims in Modern Morocco (Yale University Press, 2016) and The Shamama Case: Contesting Citizenship across the Modern Mediterranean(Princeton University Press, 2022).

This lecture is part of the Sid Lapidus Lecture Series, programs created in partnership with the exhibition How Jews Became Citizens: Highlights from the Sid Lapidus Collection. Click here for information about the exhibit.

The exhibit and program have been made possible by the generous support of Sid and Ruth Lapidus, the National Endowment for the Humanities, the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of the Office of the Governor and the New York State Legislature, and the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council.


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lecture

Thu, Jan 12
06:30PM
Thu, Jan 12
06:30PM

book talk

Morgenthau: Andrew Maier in conversation with Kati Marton – Live Book Talk & Livestreamed on Zoom

After coming to America from Germany in 1866, the Morgenthaus made history in international diplomacy, in domestic politics, and in America’s criminal justice system. With unprecedented, exclusive access to family archives, award-winning journalist Andrew Meier's new family biography vividly chronicles how the Morgenthaus amassed a fortune in Manhattan real estate, advised presidents, advanced the New Deal, exposed the Armenian genocide, rescued victims of the Holocaust, waged war in the Mediterranean and Pacific, and, from a foundation of private wealth, built a dynasty of public service. In the words of former mayor Ed Koch, they were “the closest we’ve got to royalty in New York City."

Join us live at the Center for Jewish History when Andrew Meier will discuss his book with journalist Kati Marton. Their conversation will also be streamed online.

One in-person attendee (selected at random) will receive a free copy of Morgenthau.

More About Morgenthau
Lazarus Morgenthau arrived in America dreaming of rebuilding the fortune he had lost in his homeland. He ultimately died destitute, but the family would rise again with the ascendance of Henry, who became a wealthy and powerful real estate baron. From there, the Morgenthaus went on to influence the most consequential presidency of the twentieth century, as Henry’s son Henry Jr. became FDR’s longest-serving aide, his Treasury secretary during the war, and his confidant of thirty years. Finally, there was Robert Morgenthau, a decorated World War II hero who would become the longest-tenured district attorney in the history of New York City. Known as the “DA for life,” he oversaw the most consequential and controversial prosecutions in New York of the last fifty years, from the war on the Mafia to the infamous Central Park Jogger case.

About the Speakers
Andrew Meier is the author of Black Earth: A Journey Through Russia After the Fall and The Lost Spy: An American in Stalin’s Secret Service. A former Moscow correspondent for Time, he has contributed to The New York Times Magazine, among numerous other publications, for more than two decades. His work has been recognized with fellowships from the Cullman Center for Scholars and Writers at the New York Public Library and the Leon Levy Center for Biography, as well as the National Endowment for the Humanities and the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars. He lives in Brooklyn, New York, with his wife and their two daughters.

Kati Marton is the New York Times-bestselling author of nine books, including The Chancellor–The Remarkable Odyssey of Angela Merkel (2021), and Enemies of the People–My Family's Journey to America (2010). Her 2007 book, The Great Escape, tells the stories of nine extraordinary men who grew up during Budapest's brief Golden Age and fled antisemitism to the West, where they changed the world. An award-winning former NPR correspondent and ABC News bureau chief in Germany, Kati Marton was born in Hungary and lives in New York City.


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book talk

Wed, Jan 11
12:00PM
Wed, Jan 11
12:00PM

film and discussion

A Yemenite Jerusalem Power Couple: The Story of Rabbi and Rabbanit Kapach – Live on Zoom

Join us for a movie and discussion! You will receive a link to the film "Two Legacies" three days before the program to watch at your leisure. Einat Kapach will join on Zoom to talk about making the movie, about her grandparents, their contributions to the Jewish world, and how we each gained from their legacy.

About the Film
Yosef and Bracha married when they were 12 in Sana`a, Yemen and lived together for close to 70 years. Yosef became absorbed in his books, while Bracha took care of the needy. Before he dies, Rabbi Yosef Kapach hands his granddaughter Einat, director of the film, a bundle of pages which uncover a secret he has kept close to his heart his entire life- the secret of the theological war that split the Yemenite Jewish community. The documents tell of his persecution as a young orphan by the Jews of Yemen, a persecution that continues until the day he dies in Israel. Having read these words, Einat sets out on a journey to understand why he chose her to pass on the legacy and how he managed to turn his life around from such a lonely point and to become a world-famous Jewish philosopher.

About the Director
Einat Kapach is a screenwriter and director who lives and creates in her native Jerusalem. A graduate of the Ma'aleh Film School with an MA from the Schechter Institute in Jerusalem, Einat lectures on film and Jewish identity in different communities in Israel and abroad including small Jewish communities in the US and Africa. She directed the award-winning film Jephtah's Daughterwhich played at numerous festivals around the world. She was a diarist in the film Peace Diarieswhich details the lives of Israelis and Palestinians over a six month period. Einat is frequently invited to lecture at various foundations and was a judge at the 2009 Jerusalem Film Festival. She recently directed the documentary film Two Legacies and her feature script At the End of a Long Daywon the Minister of Education's award for Artists in the field of Jewish Culture.


Presented by:

film and discussion

Wed, Jan 11
02:00PM
Wed, Jan 11
02:00PM

lecture

Legitimizing Genocide: Science, Scholarship and the Complicity of the Academy – Live on Zoom

Antisemitic discourse operated in Nazi Germany as a way to legitimize antisemitic policy in German society. This discourse existed on multiple tiers, one of which was antisemitic “Jewish Research” which is the main subject of Alan Steinweis's book, Studying the Jew: Scholarly Antisemitism in Nazi Germany (Harvard University Press, 2006). Join Steinweis and YIVO's Executive Director Jonathan Brent for a discussion of how understanding this history can be used to understand antisemitism in other historical contexts, including the contemporary United States.

About the Speakers
Alan E. Steinweis is Professor of History and Raul Hilberg Distinguished Professor of Holocaust Studies at the University of Vermont, where he has taught since 2009. In addition to numerous articles and nine coedited volumes, he is the author of four books on Nazi Germany and the Holocaust, including the soon-to-be-published The People’s Dictatorship: A History of Nazi Germany (Cambridge University Press, 2023). He is presently conducting research for a new book focusing on the attempted assassination of Adolf Hitler in November 1939 by the German cabinetmaker Georg Elser. Steinweis has held fellowships at the Free University of Berlin and the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, and has been a guest professor at the Universities of Beersheba, Hannover, Heidelberg, Frankfurt, Munich, and Augsburg.

Jonathan Brent is the Executive Director of the YIVO Institute for Jewish Research in New York City. From 1991 to 2009 he was Editorial Director and Associate Director of Yale Press. He is the founder of the world acclaimed Annals of Communism series, which he established at Yale Press in 1991. Brent is the co-author of Stalin’s Last Crime: The Plot Against the Jewish Doctors, 1948-1953 (Harper-Collins, 2003) and Inside the Stalin Archives (Atlas Books, 2008). He is now working on a biography of the Soviet-Jewish writer Isaac Babel. Brent teaches history and literature at Bard College.


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Presented by:

lecture

Sun, Jan 08
02:00PM
Sun, Jan 08
02:00PM

curator's tour

How Jews Became Citizens: Highlights from the Sid Lapidus Collection – Live Event

What does citizenship mean to you? What are the rights and responsibilities that come with citizenship?

Join curator Ivy Weingram for a one-hour in-person tour in which she addresses these meaningful questions in the special exhibition, How Jews Became Citizens: Highlights from the Sid Lapidus Collection. The Lapidus collection tells the complex, ongoing story of the Jewish people’s path to emancipation—the process through which Jews obtained rights—in Europe, across centuries. Read more about the exhibition  here.

This tour will also be offered on February 5 at 2 pm and February 16 at 6 pm.

Please note that this tour is not available on Zoom.

The exhibit and program have been made possible by the generous support of Sid and Ruth Lapidus, the National Endowment for the Humanities, the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of the Office of the Governor and the New York State Legislature, and the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council.


Presented by:

curator's tour

Thu, Jan 05
01:00PM
Thu, Jan 05
01:00PM

lecture

Boots, Arms, and Spoons: On the Material Lives of Jewish Partisans in German-occupied Lithuania (1941-1944) – Live on Zoom

In her memoir “A Partisan in Vilna” (2010), Rachel Margolis, a Jewish partisan from Lithuania, recalls how a pair of warn-out but comfortable boots “saved” her during long marches in the forest. Partisans like Margolis often left memoirs, testimonies, letters, and other materials that enable us to investigate how they manufactured, looted, estheticized, exchanged, or destroyed various objects that allow historians to explore the everyday life in the resistance. Many of such materials are held in the YIVO Archives.

By focusing on the material existence of Jewish partisans in Lithuania, Justina Smalkyté makes the argument that the ways material objects were used to carry out resistance activities and perform violence, tell us much about social relations and ethnic hierarchies in the partisan camps. In this lecture, she examines the social differentiation in the partisan camps based on possession of certain scarce objects such as boots, better food rations, and arms. The ways such objects were gifted, stolen, or distributed among partisans challenges the idea of the comradely cross-ethnic partisan community on which the communist recruitment propaganda was based. She also will address the experiences of cold, hunger, fatigue and injuries that defined partisans’ material lives in the camps and examines the issue that despite such shared experiences, ethnicity and gender remained important differentiating factors in the partisan community.

About the Speaker
Justina Smalkyté is a PhD candidate at the Sciences Po Center for History in Paris where she is preparing a dissertation on anti-Nazi resistance movements in German-occupied Lithuania (1941-1944). She holds a double MA in European History from Université Paris Cité and Humboldt University of Berlin and a BA in History from Vilnius University. Her doctoral research examines resistance through the lens of material culture: while focusing on a wide range of material objects used by anti-Nazi resistance members her thesis attempts to shed a new light on practices of resistance and violence in Lithuania under German occupation.

Her publications include the book chapter “Gender, Ethnicity, and Multidirectional Violence in the Last Months of the German Rule in Lithuania: A Case Study of Local Force Battalions” in Reshaping the Nation: Collective Identities and Post-War Violence in Europe 1944–48 (Palgrave Macmillan Press, 2022), and the forthcoming “Politics of Selective Remembering in Post-1990 Lithuania: A Case study of Lithuanian Post-Fascist Far-Right Mnemonic discourse,” which will appear in the volume Far Right Memory Politics in the Internet Era (Södertörn Academic Studies, Sweden).

Her research has been supported by research grants of the Foundation for the Memory of the Shoah in France, the YIVO Institute for Jewish Research in New York, the Association for the Advancement of Baltic Studies, and the Moshe Mirilashvili Center for Research on the Holocaust in the Soviet Union at Yad Vashem in Israel.


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Presented by:

lecture

Wed, Jan 04
11:00AM
Wed, Jan 04
11:00AM

lecture

Building Your Family Tree with the Genie Milgrom databases – Live on Zoom

Join us as Genie Milgrom shows you the databases available and how to use them to build out your family tree and complete the application process.


Presented by:

lecture