The Schmooze

On Getting Sholom Aleichem's Name Wrong

Crossposted From Under the Fig Tree

I’ve been called many things in my day: Jocelyn, Jennifer, Jen, Joselit Weissman and on occasion (and hopefully in jest) even Gender Weissman Joselit, a name designed to highlight my stalwart embrace of feminism in matters large and small. Little wonder, then, that I sympathize with the fate that has recently befallen the celebrated man of Yiddish letters, Sholom Aleichem.

Thanks to Joseph Dorman’s affecting and insightful new film, “Sholem Aleichem: Laughing in the Darkness,” its eponymous subject is experiencing something of a new lease on life (though the Forward and Dorman use different standard transliterations). At the very least, his name has probably appeared in print more times in the past month than in the previous 90-odd years since his demise in 1916.

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On Getting Sholom Aleichem's Name Wrong

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