Jewish resources to occupy your family during social distancing – part 27

By Reporter staff

A variety of Jewish groups are offering online resources – educational and recreational – for those who are not allowed out of the house. Below is a sampling of those. The Reporter will publish additional listings as they become available. 

  • The National Museum of Jewish American History will hold a virtual version of its annual fun day on December 25. This year’s event is called “Being ---- at Christmas.” It will begin at 10 am with a live concert. Other activities will be available throughout the day. Link to those activities will be made available on that day at www.nmajh.org/December25/ or on the museum’s Facebook page.
  • Registration for Pardes Institute for Jewish Studies spring 2021 is open. Classes include “Halakha in an Egalitarian Age, Women and Kaddish,Tefilin, Megilla Reading, Hair Covering and more”; “A Shattered World: from WWI to the rise of the State of Israel”; “The Changing Face of Self and Society in the 21st Century”; “ David and1 Saul: Jealousy, Pursuit and the Challenge of Morality (IISamuel)”; Highlights of the weekly Daf Yomi: Massechet Pesachim”; “How does Halakha Work?”; and “Israeli Poetry as a Window to Israeli Society and History.”For more information (including times and cost) or to register, visit https://www.tfaforms.com/4842665.
  • Progressive Judaism held a series of webinars called “Conversations with Israel and Palestine.” Recordings of them may be found at www.progressiveisrael.org/what-we-do/conversations-with-israel-palestine/.
  • ALEPH will hold the webinar “World is Changing and We Are Changing, Too: An Intergenerational Conversation for This Moment with Kohenet Keshira haLev Fife and Rabbi Eva Sax-Bolder.” To sign up for the Sunday, December 20, session, which will be held from 7- 8:15 pm, visit https://aleph.org/civicrm/event/register?reset=1&id=314. To sign up for the Sunday, January 3, session, which will be held from 7-8:15 pm, visit https://aleph.org/civicrm/event/register?reset=1&id=315.
  • ALEPH will hold “Light It Up: A Chanukah Concert with Mikey Pauker” on Sunday, December 13, from 7:30-8:30 pm. The program will be hosted by Rabbinic Pastor/Cantor Lisa Levine. For more information or to register, visit https://aleph.org/civicrm/event/register?reset=1&id=320.
  • The ninth annual Adrienne Cooper Dreaming in Yiddish Memorial Concert and Award event will be streamed from the Museum of Jewish Heritage Safra Hall, and broadcast exclusively through Yiddish New York on Sunday, December 27, at 8 pm. For more information, visit www.yiddishnewyork.com. To purchase at ticket, visit www.eventbrite.com/e/yiddish-new-york-evening-events-sunday-tickets-127787211991.
  • The 2021 YIVO-Bard Winter Program on Ashkenazi Civilization, “At the Turning Point,” will be held online from January 5-22. The deadline for registration is Monday, December 28. It will explores moments of critical transformation throughout the 20th century and beyond, while consider key inflection points in the realms of politics and culture. Among the topics to be cover are Stalin’s seizure of power and the growth of tyranny throughout the world; Yiddish children’s literature; the work of Argentine writer, essayist and poet Jorge Luis Borges; Ashkenazi heritage at the Metropolitan Museum of Art; and the deliberate destruction of books across millennia. For more information or to register, visit https://yivo.org/Winter-Program.
  • The Jewish Publication Society will offer its “New Author Webinar Series, Part II: ‘Antisemitism and the Holocaust: New Dimensions’” free on Zoom. The sessions are Mordecai Paldiel: “Saving One’s Own: Jewish Rescuers during the Holocaust,” on Monday, January 11; Salo Aizenberg: “HateMail: Antisemitism in Picture Postcards” on Monday, January 18; Mark Glickman: “Stolen Words: The Nazi Plunder of Jewish Books” on Monday, January 25; and Raphael Medoff: “The Jews Should Keep Quiet – FDR, Rabbi Stephen Wise and the Holocaust” on Thursday, February 11. All sessions are 7:30-8:30 pm. To register, e-mail office@jps.org specifying which session one want to attend and an invitation will be sent. 
  • The Siegal Lifelong Learning program at Case Western Reserve University will offer a variety of lectures during 2021. Upcoming courses include “Healing and Wholeness in a World That Seems Broken” with Gila Silverman on Thursdays, January 7-28, from 2-3:30 pm; “The Revolution/Evolution of Women Learning Torah in Trans-Denominational Judaism” with Moria Ran Ben Hai on Wednesdays, January 20-February 10, from 1:30-3 pm; “Grand Opera – A Jewish Fantasy: Meyerbeer and Halevy in Focus” with Larry Josefovitz on Wednesdays, February 3-24, from 1-3 pm; and “Law and the Holocaust in Film” with Cathy Lesser Mansfield on Tuesdays, February 9-March 2, from 11:30 am-1 pm. For more information or additional course listings, visit https://case.edu/lifelonglearning/courses/whole.
  • ORT Florida Region will hold a virtual book and author event with Leslie Barry, author of the novel “Newark Men,” which was inspired by the real life story of a Jewish boxer who was trained by the mafia and FBI to fight the rising American Nazi party. The event will take place on Thursday, January 14, at 3 pm. The cost is $40 and a question-and-answer period is included. For more information or to register, visit https://events.idonate.com/book-author-leslie-barry. 
  • ALEPH will hold “Dreams, Oracles, Predictions, and a Party!” with Rabbi Geela Rayzel Raphael and friends on Thursday, December 31, beginning at 8 pm. The program fee is “pay what you can.” The evening will be divided into sections: the first section is about dreams and prophecy; the second section will be devoted to predictions and oracles for Divine Guidance for the incoming year; and the third section will include Havdalah and a party. To register, visit https://aleph.org/civicrm/event/register?reset=1&id=326.
  • The Jewish Theological Seminary will hold several virtual events: “The Book Smugglers of the Vilna Ghetto: Choosing a Life on Meaning Under the Specter of Death” on Monday, December 21, from 1-2:30 pm – for more information or to register, visit www.jtsa.edu/the-book-smugglers-of-the-vilna-ghetto-choosing-a-life-on-meaning-under-the-specter-of-death; an author conversation “Between the Lines: The Third Daughter” with Talia Carner on Tuesday, January 12, at 7:30 pm, with Carner discussing her novel about the legal Jewish sex-trafficking union that operated with impunity for 70 years, from the late 1880s until World War II – for more information or to register, visit www.jtsa.edu/the-third-daughter; “Judaism for the World: A Neo-Hasidic Perspective” with Rabbi Arthur Green on Monday, January 11, from 7:30- 8:45 pm – for more information or to register, visit www.jtsa.edu/judaism-for-the-world-a-neo-hasidic-perspective; and “Poetry, Music, and Conversation with Grzegorz Kwiatkowski” on Tuesday, January 19, at 1 pm – for more information or to register, visit www.jtsa.edu/poetry-and-music-grzegorz-kwiatkowski.
  • A video of the concert “Hidden Voices – Ladino Songs from over 100 years ago,” which was part of the Jerusalem Oud Festival and performed on November 22 at the Confederation House in Jerusalem, can be found at at www.youtube.com/watch?v=J3MXK6nYxmI&feature=emb_logo. The event featured Hadass Pal-Yarden, one of Israel’s leading vocalists in the Judeo-Spanish tradition, along with an ensemble featuring some of Jerusalem’s top musicians in the genre.
  • Hebrew Union College will hold the rescheduled “Thinking Jewish in a Changing America” on Tuesday, December 22, at 1 pm. Rabbi David Ellenson and Rabbi Michael Marmur will chart some of the major trends spanning generations, denominations and ideologies, and share insights that resonate with the current unfolding crisis in America. To register, visit http://huc.edu/registration-huc-connect-online-learning.
  • Project Witness will present a webinar on “Greek Jewry during the Holocaust” on Saturday, December 23, at 7:30 pm. To register, visit https://zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_Zcco1RdlS8iYhqXRdp0M9g.
  • City Winery will hold its eighth annual “Christmas Eve for the Jews” virtually. It will feature Joel Chasnoff, Mark Normand, Ophira Eisenberg and Jessica Kirson. Tickets are $20. The event will take place on Thursday, December 24, at 8 pm. For more information or to buy a ticket, visit https://citywinery.com/newyork/7th-annual-christmas-eve-for-the-jews-feat-joel-chasnoff-mark-normand-more-12-24-20.html.
  • The University of Pennsylvania’s Herbert D. Katz Center for Advanced Judaic Studies and the Center for Jewish Ethics, an initiative of the Reconstructionist Rabbinical College, will hold a free online lecture series called “Jews, Race, and Religion.” The 11 sessions may be taken separately and are all held on Thursdays at 1:30 pm. The series uses the prism of Jewish experience to examine intersections of race and religion, drawing lessons from the history of antisemitism, examining the role of Jews in the racialized culture of the United States and exploring the role of race in Jewish identity. Scholars in Jewish studies, critical race studies and religious studies will share insights and research that in the hope of deepening the conversation about race, racism and anti-racism in contemporary society, both American and Jewish. For information about specific lectures or to register, visit https://katz.sas.upenn.edu/resources/blog/jews-race-and-religion.
  • Case Western Reserve University’s Siegal Lifelong Learning will host two remote learning series. The first is an Israeli Speaker Series with Israeli authors, journalists, and television and film writers, including Yehonatan Indursky, Ron Leshem, Emuna Elon and more. The first lecture will be a conversation with Eyal Rob, “From Hava Nagila to Sticker Song – Game Changing Songs in Israel’s Society” on Tuesday, January 5, at 11 am. To see the complete list or to register, visit https://case.edu/lifelonglearning/lectures/israeli-speaker-series. The second is called “Time for 24.” Attendees will study themes and structure in each of the 24 books of the Hebrew Bible (Tanach) with scholars, writers, educators and public intellectuals from across the country and around the world. People may sign up for individual weeks or the full program. Classes will meet on Tuesdays and Thursdays, February 16 through May 13 (no class during Passover), from 12:30-1:30 pm. For more information or to register, visit https://case.edu/lifelonglearning/lectures/time-24.
  • The YIVO Institute for Jewish Research will hold the free webinar “Modern Russia and The Putin System” on Monday, January 4, at 1 pm. Russian politician and economist Grigory Yavlinsky will address the history of how and why Russia came to be as it is now, the current Russian political system and how it works, and the future of autocracy in Russia. For more information or to register, visit www.yivo.org/WP2021-Keynote.
  • The National Museum of American Jewish History will hold “Flory Jagoda’s 97th Birthday Celebration” on Monday, December 21, at 1 pm. The 45-minute concert will include Ladino songs and stories from La Nona (Ladino for “The Grandmother” and one of Jagoda’s official titles), who will be accompanied on stage by one of her apprentices, Susan Gaeta, as well as Howard Bass. A limited number of Zoom spots are available and registration can be made at https://www.nmajh.org/flory-jagoda-97th-birthday-show/. The concert will also be available on the museum’s Facebook page.

For additional resources, see previous issues of The Reporter on its website, www.thereportergroup.org.