It seems certain that even the most scrupulous secular observer of the contemporary ultra-Orthodox experience, anywhere on the planet, will not have been privy to the intimacy and profound declarations of feeling and affection on display in “Fill the Void,” the daring, devastating debut from female Hasidic filmmaker Rama Burshtein.
After much speculation from those who keep tabs on domestic Jewish basketball stars (Lord knows there are few), Jon Scheyer, the former Duke University guard who guided the Blue Devils to the 2010 NCAA championship, has signed with the Israeli powerhouse Maccabi Tel Aviv.
Maybe it was only a matter of time before Socalled, the frizzy-haired, klezmer hip-hop hipster, tried to sidestep his ever-expanding identity as a “Jewish artist.” The arbiters of Jewish cultural identity go to great lengths to rope in the eclectic and the original, and a klezmer hip-hopper is a no-brainer. But no one wants to be pigeonholed.
Photo by Frank Vena
Josh Tapper travels to Kyrgyzstan to report on the precarious situation of the nation’s 1,500 Jewish residents, who have been the target of a series of anti-Semitic incidents during the past year.
In 2010, over two-thirds of Israel’s 3.45 million tourists were Christian, and nearly half were self-proclaimed religious pilgrims. It’s rare to find a discriminatory tourism industry these days — dollars are dollars — and fortunately for Israel, the Holy Land is holy for a lot of folks.
For all of its charitable mishloach manot-giving and passive-aggressive gragger-shaking, Purim is hardly the tamest Jewish holiday. At its best (worst?) the celebration follows a sort of Bakhtinian carnivalesque disorder, with masks, public denunciations of the villain Haman and booze — lots of booze.
Babs fans, how lucky can you get? (Funny Lady pun!)
Shortly after a Japanese department store came under fire late last year for stocking a Nazi costume, The Guardian published a response suggesting the Land of the Rising Sun might be suffering from cultural amnesia. In other words, new generations of Japanese have somehow forgotten their ancestors fought alongside Hitler.
Daniel Libeskind’s ‘Wheel of Conscience’ in Halifax, Nova Scotia. Courtesy Canadian Jewish Congress.