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Pirates, Pishkes And ‘Pacific Overtures’

By Masha Leon

“We’re here… to celebrate one of the most powerful and influential groups advocating for women’s health, empowerment, and rights in Asia, Africa and Latin America — the International Women’s Health Coalition,” actress and emcee Kathleen Turner said at its January 11 dinner at Cipriani 42nd Street.Alluding to the tsunami disaster,Read More


Breaking (and Baking) Bread With Communities From Around the Globe

THE FOOD MAVEN by Matthew GoodmanAt a certain point, every Jewish-cookbook writer has to confront the issue of mortality: the fact that most traditional Jewish foods, like most traditional Jewish languages, have either vanished or are in the process of vanishing before our eyes. Of the 20,000 words included in the leading Yiddish dictionary,Read More


DER YIDDISH-VINKL January 21, 2005

In the last issue of Der Vinkl, we featured Itzik Manger on the occasion of his 35th yahrzeit. Manger was known as “the people’s poet,” exploring the moods and modes of the masses. One of Manger’s most famous poems was written during World War II. He dedicated it to martyr Shmuel Zygelboym, who committed suicide in order to shake theRead More


An Eve Where Italian Was the Mameloshn

By Masha Leon

“It is an honor to be part of the work of the Center for Jewish History,” said Antonio Bandini, Italy’s consul general in New York, at last month’s “A Conversation With Nedo Fiano on His Book, ‘Il Coraggio Di Vivere,’” sponsored by the center, the Centro Culturale Primo Levi, The Jewish Heritage Project, New York UniversityRead More


DER YIDDISH-VINKL January 14, 2005

Ruth Rubin’s songbook “A Treasury of Jewish Folk Songs,” published a half-century ago, is still a treasure trove of songs transliterated from the Hebrew into the Roman alphabet, accompanied by Rubin’s very own translations into English. Multitalented Rubin was a singer, a recording artist, a musicologist and a folklorist.What follows was aRead More


Kabbalistic Kirtan: Just Replace Hindu With Hebrew

By Rachel Zuckerman

f you’ve ever been to a yoga class, you’ve probably performed kirtan, an ancient Hindu call-and-response chant practiced by Hindus and Sikhs.Now imagine that the phrases you were chanting were not Hindu, but Hebrew. Welcome to the newest rung in the Jewish spirituality ladder: kabbalistic kirtan.The genre — which features chanting JewishRead More


‘Center’ing Around Jewish Culture, Arts and History

By Masha Leon

The Curtain raiser for the December 15 Center for Jewish History’s Board of Governors and Board of Directors annual dinner program was emcee Joel Chasnoff, a comedian whose reservoir of Jewish-Christian humor included references to “Jewish guilt” and a chuckler about the “Conservative Jew” who was “the Shabbos goy at anRead More


The Mamele Returns

By Marjorie Ingall

Hi, I’m back. Don’t hug me; I am caked in sputum and sticky with breast milk. I am also angsting over how to file a column between bouts of nursing Maxine, who still won’t take a bottle with any predictability after 2.5 months on Earth; doing endless loads of laundry; pinching Josie’s nosebleeds, and deferring endless big-sisterly requestsRead More


Mixing Up The Spritz

By Barry Joseph

Like Chinese food and pickles, seltzer –– an effervescent spirit that has inspired dreams of cures for such diverse ailments as scurvy and indigestion –– is often associated with Jews. An ad for an at-home seltzer maker touts its product as part of the history of Jewish ingenuity: “Matzo, circa 1440 B.C. — Chicken Soup, circa 1280 A.D.Read More


My Grandmother Between Life and Death

By Andrew R. Heinze

Here is how the Talmud describes the life span of a man: At five years the age is reached for the study of Bible, at ten for the study of Mishnah, at thirteen for the fulfillment of the commandments, at fifteen for the study of Talmud, at eighteen for marriage, at twenty for seeking a livelihood, at thirty for full strength, at forty forRead More


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