Jews of Iran:
Not Just Purim and the Revolution
Sunday, October 15
USA 12:00 pm PT / 3:00 pm ET
UK 8:00 pm / France 09:00 pm / Israel 10:00 pm
The talk will last approximately 90 minutes
About this talk
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.
Now in a second Diaspora in the United States and Israel, with a small population remaining in Iran, the community faces inevitable changes. We will use the knowledge of the past to look to the future of the community and discuss how the unique heritage of Iran's Jews can be preserved.
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.
With your contribution, you will also be donating to The HUC-JIR Jewish Language Project.
Its mission includes a recent focus on the Jewish Languages of Iran, actively taking steps to prevent the extinction of over a dozen Iranian Jewish languages and with them, the heritage and stories they contain.
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