Yiddish Category

(apologies to those who aren’t living in new york city – this is an event announcement) (it seems like there are many more radical purim extravaganzas going on all over the country, though, and i’m posting this announcement in part to encourage folks to think big and exciting for next year…) this year’s eighth-or-so edition […]

Parsha Balak

In: African-American, Racism, Torah, Yiddish

This is a parsha of contradictions. Balak, king of Moab, fears the Egyptian Hebrews and seeks help from the powerful prophet, Balaam. YHWH goes back and forth as to whether or not Balaam can go to Moab. He finally goes and (according to some rabbis) tries to curse the Hebrews, but is only able to […]

for poetry month (why april, by the way? ‘the cruelest month’? ‘with his shoures soote’? please.), here’s the text of a talk by irena klepfisz – a fantastic poet in yiddish, english, and both at once, as well as an insightful essayist and deeply committed radical – from a 2006 conference at barnard college called “Jewish Women Changing America: Cross-Generational Conversations”. at the bottom is a poem from one of klepfisz’s books. a complete transcript of the “Changing Culture” panel that klepfisz spoke on (and the rest of the conference) is available online here.

Yiddish Parody on Dick and Jane

In: Humor, JVoices, Yiddish

I have been searching for someone to do a Yiddish cultural column for JVoices. So, I couldn’t not share this video as a weekend delight. I actually bought the Yiddish version of Dick and Jane as a primer since I only know a few words. When I was young, my Grandma used to teach me […]

Ephraim Oakes is an oysterlisher* yid, proud golesnik, and aspiring writer of Yiddish punk songs. He’s still recovering from the culture shock of moving from a commune in rural Virginia to the small New England city where he currently resides. He used to make cheese and hammocks for a living, though at the moment, his […]