Upcoming Events

Qesher is an independent initiative introducing different Jewish communities from around the world. Your contributions to the talks allow us to continue with our mission. You can choose from three different admission fees according to your ability. We also donate 10% of the profits of every talk to different projects and institutions.

Learn more about us here. You can also read more about the projects supported thanks to your contribution here.

Sunday, October 17

There will two sessions

Jewish Mexico: a Visual Journey

Monica Unikel - I invite you to a visual tour through the history of the Jews in Mexico, focused mostly on the twentieth century, when the current community was formed, but touching on episodes from the sixteenth century, when crypto-Jews first arrived. We will learn about their origins, their establishment in the city's neighborhoods, their identity spaces for the living and the dead, their dreams and achievements. It will be a visual feast thanks to the incredible historical photos I have received from immigrant families, their first-hand testimonies, and other invaluable documents. This event is fully booked. Register here for Monica's new session on November 11

Jewish Lisbon and Portugal: a community reconnecting with its past

Glória Ribeiro - Join me on a virtual tour through the Jewish heritage of Lisbon, Portugal; a presence that dates back to the Roman era. This visit will allow you to understand the living Jewish community in Lisbon and learn about their history, their traditions and their everyday life. For centuries after the expulsion, many "conversos" kept practicing their faith in strict secrecy, and the most famous example are the Belmonte Jews, who until recently lived as a strictly isolated community. We will make a detour in our journey to learn about them and about the rapidly growing community of Porto. This event is fully booked.Please register here for Gloria's next session on November 7

Sefarad: Music of the Jews of Spain, Portugal and their diaspora

Judith Cohen - Sefarad is both a geographical place and a concept - it's Spain and Portugal, and it's the centuries and continents of the Sephardic diaspora, to the present. We'll travel - musically - from medieval Jewish life in Spain and Portugal through the diaspora in Morocco and the eastern Mediterranean, former Ottoman lands. Old ballads with hypnotizing stories, irresistible wedding song rhythms, songs of the Jewish calendar cycle and the popular love songs and songs of daily life will be presented both live and in archival recordings, with photos and stories of the Sephardim who kept this tradition alive against all odds. This event is fully booked. Please register here for Judith's next session on November 11.

Sunday, October 24

USA (10:30 am PT / 1:30 pm ET)

UK 6:30 pm / France 7:30 pm / Israel 8:30 pm

The talk will last approximately 90 minutes

Two people, one womb: The Jews of Italy

Miriam Camerini  - Jews have been living in Italy since the last centuries BCE, even before the destruction of the second Temple. They've adopted local music, food, language, style and customs. There have been tough times, but overall it is a story of co-existence and mutual respect. We'll explore the history of Jews during the Roman Empire, the Middle Ages, the ghettos of Venice, Mantua and Rome through emancipation, World Wars and the present day. We'll discover language, poetry, music, theater, liturgy and - of course - cuisine. Read more and sign up.

Sunday, October 31

USA (10:30 am PT / 1:30 pm ET)

UK 5:30 pm / France 6:30 pm / Israel 7:30 pm

The talk will last approximately 90 minutes

The Jews of Belarus: From the Pale of Settlement to the USSR and Beyond

Debra Brunner and Artur Livshyts - Belarus' Jewish story is rich, vital, traumatic, fascinating and barely spoken of. The territory was ruled at different times by Lithuania, Poland and Russia. It was invaded by Nazis and came under the rule of the USSR until 1991. This talk will give a snapshot of the history of the Jewish people of Belarus, the legacy on the Belarusian Jewish community of today, and an insight into the building of Jewish Cultural Heritage Trail initiated by The Together Plan Charity. Read more and sign up.

Thursday, November 4

USA (10:30 am PST / 1:30 pm EST)

UK 6:30 pm / France 7:30 pm / Israel 8:30 pm

The talk will last approximately 90 minutes

Jewish Tunisia: at a crossroads of civilizations

Rafram Chaddad - Tunisia, the former seat of Cartaghe's empire, has been home to different Jewish communities for more than 2000 years. Its central location at a crossroads of civilizations led to multiple influences in food, culture, language and identity. Rafram will take us through the different elements of the complex Jewish layer of Tunisia, which took a fateful turn in 1967 after the Six-Day War. Rafram will talk about how Jewish life looks today in Tunisia and about his work as a visual artist, which blends biography and Jewish identity in contemporary Tunisia. Read more and sign up.

Sunday, November 7

USA (10:30 am PT / 1:30 pm ET)

UK 6:30 pm / France 7:30 pm / Israel 8:30 pm

The talk will last approximately 90 minutes

The Two Millennia Story of Moroccan Jewry

Yona Abeddour - Morocco is home to one of the oldest Jewish communities in the Diaspora. This two-millennia heritage is the result of an intersection between various civilizations and traditions including Berber, Andalusian, and Arab among others. We will explore the past and present of Moroccan Jewry while addressing some central questions related to why the Jews left or stayed, what is Jewish life like in Morocco today, and what is the future of Moroccan Jews in the country. Read more and sign up

Sunday, November 14

USA (10:30 am PT / 1:30 pm ET)

UK 6:30 pm / France 7:30 pm / Israel 8:30 pm

The talk will last approximately 90 minutes

Jews of Argentina: "They sowed seeds and harvested doctors"

Claudia Hercman -We invite you to a virtual tour of Jewish Argentina, the 6th largest Jewish Community in the world.

Argentina has always been a refuge for those who fled from the Inquisition in Spain and Portugal, the pogroms in Russia and the Holocaust in Europe. We will learn about the first Jewish immigrants, who settled in the rural areas and gradually moved to the cities. In the 60s there were half a million Jews in Argentina, now there are only 220,000. What happened to those who left and those who remained? Read more and sign up

Tuesday, November 16

USA 10:30 am PT / 1:30 pm ET

UK 6:30 pm / France 7:30 pm / Israel 8:30 pm

The talk will last approximately 90 minutes

Music among the Crypto-Jews of Portugal: An almost vanished world

Judith Cohen - After the expulsion of Jews from Portugal, some stayed as Crypto-Jews. The early 20th century saw the "discovery" of the Jews of Belmonte and the northeast region of Tras-os-Montes, who had lived in isolation with few cultural contacts with the outside world. I will introduce the people I interviewed, and explain how songs and recited prayers work in both the religious and secular contexts. Then we will move to the internet and social media age and their folklorization, always, with an emphasis on people and where and how they live. Read more and sign up

Sunday, November 21

USA 10:30 am PT / 1:30 pm ET

UK 6:30 pm / France 7:30 pm / Israel 8:30 pm

The talk will last approximately 90 minutes

Stories of Jewish Budapest: From affirmation to persecution and revival

Dora Koranyi - Budapest, the capital of Hungary, has one of the most fascinating Jewish cultures and history in Europe. It is a community that still flourishes in spite of the many difficulties it has had throughout its long history. I would like to invite you to a virtual tour, where I will share with you stories about this community, from the time of the Austrian empire, through the Holocaust and the communist era until our present time. Read more and sign up

Past and Future Events

FREE EVENT - Get ready to travel again: Sephardic Jewish Heritage Tour to Spain March 21-28, 2022

Moisés Hassán-Amselém - Travel to Spain for 8 days and 7 nights in March 21-28, 2022 and discover the Golden Age of Spanish Jewry with Qesher speakers and guides. Join us for a dynamic virtual presentation of the "Sephardic Jewish Heritage Tour to Spain", offered in partnership with Nora Kaplan Learn-in-trips and Jewish Spain Tour. We will follow the planned itinerary with Moisés, who will take us through the highlights of Seville, Granada, Cordoba, Toledo and more. Moisés will be available to answer any logistical questions, and if the tour looks exciting to you, you can book a spot. Watch the recording on our Facebook page.

Past and Present of Jewish Romania, from Transylvania with love

Natalia Gross & Cristian Ezri - Before the Holocaust the Romanian Jewish Community had a very interesting mix of cultures, traditions and languages, based on the three areas of the country: Transylvania, Moldavia & Wallachia. Find out some of the historical facts and legends of the community, and the eclecticism of the scenery where Judaism could have been long gone. Discover our life story, and our goal to keep Judaism alive in Romania, while being fully involved in the secular society. Sign up here to be among the first to know when we repeat this talk

Jewish city tour of Riga, the hidden gem of the Baltic

Daniel Gurevich - Join us for a virtual walking tour of Riga, once dubbed the 'Paris of the North'. Latvia's capital is an architectural gem of gothic, renaissance, baroque and Art Nouveau buildings, and its Old Town was declared a UNESCO Heritage site in 1997. 

The Jewish history of Riga reaches as far back as the 13th century, but it wouldn't be for at least 200 more years that Jews would make an economic impact. In the late 1920s, Riga even became the center of the global Lubavitch movement . Come and discover this hidden gem with us. Sign up here to be among the first to know when we schedule a new date.

St. Petersburg from the Jewish Perspective: Life, History, Art

Evgenia Kempinski - St. Petersburg, capital of Russian Empire for 200 years, is known for its unique beauty and rich cultural heritage. It's my privilege to show you the beauty of my city and much more; we will look at St. Petersburg through a Jewish lens. We will learn about the 'maskilim' who led the community in the 19th century, explore the role of Jews in the Russian Revolution, discuss the situation of the Soviet Jews, and witness the miraculous rebirth of Jewish life after the fall of USSR. I will also share with you my own family's story to illustrate the history and present-day life of our Jewish community. Sign up here to be among the first to know when we schedule a new date.

Rosh Hashanah Food Traditions Around the World

Yaffi Lvova - "They tried to kill us, we survived, let's eat!"--the theme of every Jewish holiday! But what exactly are we eating? And why? Jewish culinary tradition varies between families. Food-related differences can be attributed to the surrounding culture, to geographical location, and to food migration around the globe. This talk will feature a brief overview of different Jewish culinary traditions, their history, and the way each dish is making its way through the diaspora. If you are interested in other Jewish food related talks, sign up here and we will notify you when they are scheduled.

Polish Jews: Warsaw Ghetto remains and Jewish revival

Łukasz Godlewski - Before World War II, Warsaw was the second largest Jewish city in the world. After the Holocaust many survivors left Poland, but some stayed. In the last decades, young Polish people have been discovering their Jewish roots, which were often hidden by their parents and grandparents. I am one of them, and I want to share my family's story with you. I will also take you on a virtual tour of the Warsaw Ghetto remains and show you how Jewish life in Warsaw has revived. Sign up here to be among the first to know when we schedule a new date.

Iraqi Kurdistan: A Land of Jewish Heritage, and Potential Reconciliation

Levi Meir Clancy - From the Neo-Assyrian era to the present day, learn about the Jews from Kurdistan and their enduring history. Today, there are hundreds of thousands of Kurdish Jews who look to their ancestral fatherland with affection, interest, and curiosity. For some, the support has even become political, and the Kurdistan Region of Iraq is celebrated as one of the most durable, stable, tolerant, and secure governments in the entire Middle East. Discover more about Kurdistan, its Jewish heritage, and the present-day efforts to support Jewish expression. Sign up here to be among the first to know when we schedule a new date.

Jewish Life in China: Tales from the Far East

Pablo Faivel Levinton - For many people it is surprising to learn that there is a long and rich history of Jewish communities in China. In this talk we will explore the three places with the most relevant historical presence of Jews: Kaifeng (where a community was established in the Middle Ages and whose descendants still live today); Harbin (where a community from Russia thrived around the Trans-Siberian Railway), and Shanghai (where thousands of Jews came as refugees during WWII). We will also learn how Jewish life is today for those who currently live in China. Sign up here to be among the first to know when we schedule a new date.

Colonial roots and vibrant present: The Jewish Heritage of Brazil

Felipe Lichand - In Brazil we can find one of the largest Jewish communities in Latin America, with a presence in different regions, each with distinct stories. In this talk we will introduce you to the Jewish history of Brazil from colonial times to present. Travel with us to Rio, São Paulo and Recife, and discover with images and videos the most emblematic Jewish landmarks of these cities. Sign up here to be among the first to know when we schedule a new date.

Kavkazi "Mountain Jews": Ancient Hebrew and Persian roots at the border of Azerbaijan and Russia

Valeriya Nakshun - The Jewish community of the Caucasus lived for centuries in the mountainous region between the Black and Caspian Seas. However, their history dates back to biblical times, when they found refuge in the Persian Empire. They remained under the sphere of Persian influence until 1812, when these lands were ceded to Tsarist Russia to be later absorbed into the Soviet Union. This talk will feature an overview of Kavkazi Jewish origins and history, and the way in which the diaspora is making efforts to preserve their heritage today.  Sign up here to be among the first to know when we schedule a new date.

Jewish Languages Today: Endangered, Surviving, and Thriving

Sarah Bunin Benor - Throughout history, Jews around the world have spoken many languages. In this multimedia session, you will learn what these languages have had in common and how they are currently shifting. Over the past two centuries, migrations and other historical events have led to major changes in the linguistic profile of Jewish communities around the world. Several long-standing Jewish languages have become endangered. At the same time, Jews are engaging with these languages in "post-vernacular" ways. Dr. Benor will explain these developments and highlight the urgent need for documentation and reclamation. Sign up here to be among the first to know when we schedule a new date.

The Bene-Israel of India: an ancient living community

Eliaz Reuben-Dandeker -The Bene-Israel is the largest Jewish historical community from the Indian sub-continent. According to their oral tradition, they arrived in India sometime in the first or second century BCE. We will explore their history, culture and heritage. How did it all began? What part did they take in the history of today's India and Pakistan? What was their role under British colonial rule, and in the creation of the Bollywood film industry? Of some 100,000 Bene Israel at the turn of the 21st century, less than 4,000 remain in India. The great majority have immigrated to Israel, thus realizing their motto: "Mother India, Father Israel". Sign up here to be among the first to know when we schedule a new date.

Gleams and shadows of Jewish life in France

Emmanuelle Stein - France has currently the largest Jewish population in Europe. The history of French Jews successively alternated between periods of tolerance and prosperity and the ordeal of insecurity and anti-Semitism, with both phenomena sometimes coexisting in parallel. Paris born Emmanuelle Stein will provide an overview of the Jewish presence in France from the Middle Ages to present day, while describing what pluralistic Judaism looks like here today through the eyes of a young Jewish woman and activist for human rights. Sign up here to be among the first to know when we schedule a new date.

In Golem's Shadow: The Jews of Prague between Reality and Fiction

David Kraus Jews arrived to the Czechlands before the 9th century, and eventually Prague became home to once the largest Jewish community in the world. Its former Jewish Quarter is a UNESCO World Heritage site, and the ancient Old New Synagogue, the oldest working shul. Did Hitler really build a "Museum of Extinct Race" in Prague - and how did the Golem oppose him? Why is the story of interwar Czechoslovakia a key to unlocking aspects of modern Jewish identity?  We will also cover the renaissance of a community that almost ceased to exist due to the Holocaust and Communism. Sign up here to be among the first to know when we schedule a new date.

Bukharian Jews: At the Crossroads of Sephardic, Mizrahi, and Russian-Speaking Worlds

Ruben Shimonov  - The experience of the native Jews of Central Asia - Bukharian Jews - is situated at a unique intersection of Sephardic, Mizrahi, and Russian-speaking Jewish identities.  We will explore the eclectic story of this millennia-old Jewish community, discovering the ways in which Bukharian Jews have developed their multifaceted and rich culture, while also shedding light on how their journey fits into the broader historical saga of the Jewish people.  Sign up here to be among the first to know when we schedule a new date.

Frost-resistant Jews of Siberia, Russia's promised land

Gregory Touretsky - Siberia is always bitterly cold, and dangerous, brown bears walk its streets - as the popular stereotype says. But is it really so? In this talk we'll learn about life on this vast territory during the last 400 years. Jews of the Pale of Settlement tried to escape to America, to Palestine - but some of them chose a different route and went to Siberia. Others were forced to go there. We'll explore when and how Jews got to Siberia, where they settled and what they did while the country and the world went through major changes time and again. Sign up here to be among the first to know when we schedule a new date.

Jewish Barcelona: now you see it, now you don't

Dominique Tomasov - Jewish presence in Barcelona can be traced back to between the mid 9th until the end of the 14th century. What are the hints to this Jewish past? Are there any artifacts from those days? Where are they kept? How do we connect with our history? Which are our places of memory today? The early 20th century marks the beginning of a second chapter of Jewish life in the city. We will learn about the irregular evolution of this community, the second largest in Spain. And we will discover how Jews contributed to some of the "most Spanish" creations. Sign up here to be among the first to know when we schedule a new date.

Finland: Home of kosher reindeer and Kabbalat Shabbat at midnight

Mercédesz Czimbalmos and Dr. Dóra Pataricza

The Jewish minority of Finland, numbering approximately 1200 people, is organised into two centers in Helsinki and Turku, which makes it one of the northernmost Jewish communities in the world. Finland is one of the few countries with an Eastern European (Litvak) Jewish community that was unaffected by the Holocaust. Its double nature as an Orthodox-rooted yet progressive Jewish congregation also makes it unique in the world. Sign up here to be among the first to know when we schedule a new date.

Jewish Africa: A Photographic Journey

Jono David - Since antiquity, the Jewish people have had a presence in Africa, making some of its communities among the oldest in the world. This interactive presentation delineates some of that history while taking viewers on a virtual journey through a photographic project that took me to 30 countries across the continent. The presentation spotlights emerging Black Jewish groups in Uganda, Cameroon, and Ghana as well as the historical Orthodox community of Djerba (Tunisia) and Chabad-Lubavitch of Central Africa in Kinshasa (Democratic Republic of Congo). Sign up here to be among the first to know when we schedule a new date.

Turkish Jews: Jewish legacy in Anatolia and today's Turkey

Nisya Isman Allovi - Director Jewish Museum of Turkey 

The history of the Jews in Anatolia started 2400 years ago with the arrival of Romaniot, Mizrahim and Karaits followed later by Ashkenazim and Sephardic Jews. We will examine ancient synagogues, Jewish settlements and cemeteries belonging to different eras and traditions, as well as important events of WWI and WWII. Sephardic cuisine, music, Judeo Spanish language, ethnographic and liturgical objects from the museum collection will be explained. Finally we will explore today's vibrant Jewish life in Turkey. Sign up here to be among the first to know when we schedule a new date.

A Tale of Three Kingdoms: The Jews of Andalusia, Morocco and Gibraltar

Moisés Hassán-Amselém - Andalusia (Andalucía), the southern region of Spain, was once considered the most advanced and educated society in the western world. After their expulsion, some of its Jews went south crossing the Strait of Gibraltar and settled down in the land already known as Morocco. Two hundred years later, some descendants of these now Moroccan Jews returned to Gibraltar, a rock of less than two square miles that had just become part of the British Empire, and since 1749 there has been a significant Jewish presence here. Travel with us in their footsteps. Sign up here to be among the first to know when we schedule a new date.

Jewish Bulgaria: A Virtual Sephardic Journey

Dr. Joseph Benatov  - Join us for a dynamic interactive trip through Bulgaria's rich Jewish heritage. You will have a chance to learn about the history and culture of the Bulgarian Sephardic Jews and the details surrounding the survival of 50,000 of them during the Holocaust. Joseph will also share personal family stories of growing up and being part of the country's vibrant. Jewish community. Sign up here to be among the first to know when we schedule a new date.

From Ethiopia to Israel:

The Unofficial Story

Efrat Yerday - When talking about the "Aliyah" (immigration) from Ethiopia we usually think about the great operations of the State of Israel that took place berween 1984 and 1991. This narrative highlights the powerful story of the gathering of the exiles and the heroism of the State. In this lecture, we will highlight the story of  the Ethiopian community itself, which struggled for recognition and was denied its own voice for almost 30 years. By engaging with its story we will also learn about the identity, strengths, and activism of a community with a unique way of life and traditions. Sign up here to be among the first to know when we schedule a new date.

The Jews of the Great Silk Road: Yesterday and today

Manashe Khaimov - Follow in the footsteps of the Bukharian Jewish merchants on the Silk Road and discover the ancient network of trade routes that were for centuries crucial to Eurasian cultural interaction.  Understand the impact and the contribution that Central Asia's Jewish communities of today's Uzbekistan, Tajikistan, Kazakhstan, Turkmenistan, and Afghanistan made towards the development of this ancient path, and learn about the Jewish presence in this area for over 2000 years. Sign up here to be among the first to know when we schedule a new date.

Jewish Cuba: Past, Present and Future

Saul Berenthal - Cuba became a refuge for Jews since 1492, when conversos sought a safe haven from the Spanish Inquisition. Today, a tiny but united community remains after more than five hundred years of history and five distinct waves of Jewish immigration. This will be a personal and historical account of Jewish life in Cuba from a Cuban native. This journey will include pre- and post-revolution era life as well as Cuba in the present day, including current challenges and aspirations. Sign up here to be among the first to know when we schedule a new date.

Jewish Amsterdam: A Small Community with a Giant History

Nachshon Rodrigues Pereira - One of the few original Portuguese Jews left in Amsterdam describes what Jewish Amsterdam was like in the 17th century when the city was the center of the Jewish world, offering the best Jewish education, housing the biggest Rabbis and home to the largest synagogue in the world. Find out how this community was shaped and how it shaped its environment. How much was lost during World War II and what is left now. A compelling journey embellished with music, visuals and anecdotes. Sign up here to be among the first to know when we schedule a new date.

Vilnius: The Jerusalem of Lithuania and the city of my family

Daniel Gurevich - Lithuania became home to a Jewish community seven hundred years ago that suddenly was known as "Litvak". Why? When? What did it mean then and what does it mean today? In this talk I will use my own personal and family stories to illustrate the past and present of Vilnius and Lithuania, explaining the main reasons why Vilnius is famous in the Jewish world, and showing you the principal hallmarks of a Jewish tour in Vilnius. Sign up here to be among the first to know when we schedule a new date.

The 3K Virtual Tour of Jewish Lithuania: Kaunas, Kedainiai and Kalvarija

Daniel Gurevich - We continue our series of Virtual Tours in Lithuania. In my first talk we presented Jewish Vilnius. Now, get ready for the country's second-largest city, Kaunas, and the towns of Kedainiai and Kalvarija. Kaunas (Kovno) was 60% Jewish at the end of the XIX century. Using videos I will guide you through its main Jewish heritage sights. After that, we will jump 50 kilometres north to Kedainiai, (Keidan), which was home to a very interesting Jewish community. Finally, the shtetl of Kalvarija (Kalvarye), is definitely a must-see in this journey. Sign up here to be among the first to know when we schedule a new date.

The Jews of Iran: A 2700-year journey

Ruben Shimonov - Join us in this journey as we explore the rich, deep-rooted history of one of the oldest Jewish communities in the world.  The origins of Iranian/Persian Jewry date back to late biblical times, and are mentioned in the books of Isaiah, Daniel, Ezra, Nehemiah, and Esther. Through music, photography, visual and literary arts we will take a virtual journey to a region steeped in twenty-seven centuries of uninterrupted Jewish history. Sign up here to be among the first to know when we schedule a new date.

It is personal: Reviving the history of the Jewish community of Mosul, Iraq

Omar Mohammed - As a historian, I understand the difference between what happened and the "narrative of what happened". A difference that made me try to understand the history of my own city, Mosul, following its liberation from ISIS. What happened to the Jews of Mosul and why was their history erased and kept off the record? Who were they and how did they live? How were they deported and what happened next? Where are they now? Many questions that led me to start looking and searching for every Mosuli Jewish person around the world and to reconnect with them in order to preserve and document their stories. Sign up here to be among the first to know when we schedule a new date.

Salonica and Sarajevo:

Balkan Sephardi Metropolises

Dr. Joseph Benatov - As Sephardi Jews settled in the Ottoman Empire, Salonica and Sarajevo became two of the most important centers of Jewish life. Our talk will highlight some of the most important figures and events from the Jewish histories of these cities. How did the famous Sarajevo Haggadah survive both Nazi occupation and the Balcan Wars? What effect did the charismatic false messiah Sabbatai Zevi have on the Jews of 17th-century Salonica? We will also travel through these picturesque sites and visit their sumptuous synagogues, the iconic White Tower of Thessaloniki, the colorful Old Bazaar of Sarajevo, and much more. Sign up here to be among the first to know when we repeat this talk

Remember Baghdad

Edwin Shuker - In 2015 Edwin Shuker was asked if he had any film footage of Baghdad for a documentary that was being produced about the story of Jews in Iraq. The director was incredulous when Edwin offered to fly to Baghdad with the film crew and get the footage himself! In doing so he revisited his childhood home, which he had not seen since the day his family escaped for their lives when he was young. In addition to that, he even purchased a new house in the city of Erbil! Over the course of the trip and production, Edwin vividly relived his life and the life of 2000 years of Jewish history in Iraq. In this talk he will share that life and let you live it too. Sign up here to be among the first to know when we repeat this talk

Golden Age, Silver Age: Jews of Spain yesterday and today

Dr. Victoria Atlas Prilutsky - Jewish History of Spain is one of the most glorious and most tragic passages in the history of Jewish People. For an hour and a half we'll be able to traipse together along those thrilling events and times: from the very beginning of Jewish presence and life in the Iberian peninsula, its flourishing, through its tragic interruption and into its recent revival (barely over a century ago) Sign up here to be among the first to know when we repeat this talk

Jewish Mexico: from Inquisition to prosperity

Benito Gritzewsky - Among the earliest colonial settlers of Mexico were countless crypto-Jews escaping the Spanish Inquisition. For the next 300 years they were persecuted to the point of total obscurity. Mexican independence brought freedom of worship, and conversos gradually displayed their faith again. In the 20th Century, Mexico welcomed thousands of Jews fleeing the Middle East and Europe, and the foundations of a thriving community were established. By the 1950's it had become one of the world's most prosperous, which continues to thrive to this day. Sign up here to be among the first to know when we repeat this talk

From Yemen to Israel: Conversations with my Grandmother

Gavriella Bigio Dahan - The Jewish community of Yemen has existed since antiquity, but today comprises less than 50 affiliated members. The past century saw the largest waves of immigration to Israel, among which my grandmother took part. Through conversations with her, I learned both of her personal ordeal as a child thrust into the unknown, as well as the changing way of life for Yemenites in Israel. They and their descendants have made their mark in Israeli society and have contributed much to religious study, music, crafts and, of course, food. Sign up here to be among the first to know when we repeat this talk.

Greek Jewry: At the crossroads of civilizations

Joseph Michael Vardakis - The presence of Jews in Greece dates back to antiquity; it is the oldest Jewish community in the western hemisphere, it was the epicenter of Sephardi culture in Europe and boasted the unique Greek-speaking Romaniote community as well as Jews that had taken refuge there from all across Europe. At the start of WWII, Jews in Greece numbered around 80,000, however the Holocaust decimated the Jewish population. At present, the Jewish community is working to preserve its unique heritage. Sign up here to be among the first to know whe we repeat this talk.

From Post-war to the 21st Century: A Portrait of Contemporary Jewish Life in Berlin

Micki Weinberg - Both before and after the War, Berlin has been a center for creativity. Since the Fall of the Berlin Wall, Berlin has returned to being a global center for artists, creatives, and others seeking to experience the open minded and supportive environment that Berlin offers. This has led to an influx of Jews from around the world-- ex-Hasidim, Israelis, Russian speakers, Americans, and others--together creating new communities and forms of Jewish life and thought. This talk will explore post-War Jewish life in Berlin, with a special focus on the rich variety of Jewish life today. Sign up here to be among the first to know whe we repeat this talk.

Growing up Jewish in Uganda

Shoshana Nambi - The Abayudaya community was founded by a tribal chief who converted himself and many of his followers to Judaism in 1919. One hundred years later, there are nine synagogues in different Ugandan villages, three Jewish schools, and the community continues to grow. I will share the history of my community, as well as my own family story and journey to rabbinical school. I will also comment on my experiences living in Israel and America as a Ugandan Jew. Sign up here to be among the first to know whe we repeat this talk.

Get to know the "Tarbut Foundation": striving to preserve the heritage and memory of the Jews of Maramures (Romania)

Peninah Zilberman - Tarbut Foundation Sighet (FTS) was established in 2014 following the 70ᵗʰ commemoration to the Jewish deportations from Maramures. Due to the tremendous success of that first gathering, we founded FTS with the intention to keep alive the memory of the 40,000 Maramures Jews that lived in the region before the Holocaust. We strive to preserve the Jewish heritage of Maramures through art, culture and education. We invite you to a webinar in order to learn more about our work. Watch the recording on our Facebook page.

Get to know: The Museum of Turkish Jews in Istanbul

Nisya Isman Allovi - Director and Curator of The Quincentennial Foundation Museum of Turkish Jews in Istanbul

This talk is part of our "Get to know" series, in which we introduce the organizations and projects that we donate to after the talks. The Museum of Turkish Jews showcases their unique legacy in the Ottoman Empire and in modern Turkey. It displays the 2600 years of historical and cultural heritage of Turkish Jews in this land, and their contributions to the social and political life in the country. Since 2015 it has welcomed visitors in its new complex in The Neve Shalom Synagogue. Lets take a tour at the museum together. Watch the recording on our Facebook page.

Get to know: The Genealogy Department at the Jewish Historical Institute in Warsaw

For more than 25 years the Genealogy Department at the Emanuel Ringelblum Jewish Historical Institute in Warsaw has been researching Jewish families' histories from Poland. They help rebuild fragmented family tales, find traces of ancestors, and connect relatives living in various parts of the world. What does one need to know about searching for roots? Where to begin? Whom to ask for assistance? How to prove your Polish citizenship? What are Jewish surnames? We invite you for a webinar to get to know the Jewish Genealogy Department from Warsaw. Watch the recording on our Facebook page.

Get to know: "Sephardic Balkans - Jewish Heritage Tours"

Joseph Benatov - Join us for a dynamic virtual presentation of the Jewish heritage tours offered by Sephardic Balkans LLC. All trips are led by Dr. Joseph Benatov of the University of Pennsylvania, who will take you on a visual tour of the Jewish Balkans. We will focus in detail on the following three itineraries:

  • Jewish Bosnia, Croatia, Slovenia, and Trieste (Italy)
  • Jewish Bulgaria, North Macedonia, and Greece
  • Jewish Romania, Serbia, and Szeged (Hungary)
Joseph will be available to answer any logistical questions, and if any of the tours look exciting to you, you can reserve a spot for summer 2022. Watch the recording on our Facebook page.