On this evening, George Prochnik presents his bildungsroman on Gershom Scholem, one of the twentieth century’s most important humanist thinkers. Prochnik traces the lifeline of Scholem, and weaves it with an intimate story of his own youth, marriage, and spiritual quest in Jerusalem.
In the new history, We’ll Always Have Casablanca, film historian Noah Isenberg gives a rich account of this beloved movie’s origins. Through extensive research and interviews with filmmakers, film critics, family members of the cast and crew, and diehard fans, Isenberg reveals the myths and realities behind Casablanca’s production, focusing in particular on the central role of refugees—nearly all the actors were immigrants from Hitler’s Europe.
Ismar Schorsch, former President of the Leo Baeck Institute, will engage in conversation with David Ellenson about the former’s newly published book, a biography of 19th century academic Leopold Zunz.
One of the jewels of the collection of the National Library of Israel is Ms. Heb. 8o6527, a stunningly illuminated High-Holiday Mahzor from the second quarter of the fourteenth century. Librarians and curators have long sought ways to provide access to unique works like this, which remain untouchable when exhibited and offer none of the physical pleasures of books when digitized. World-class craftsmen like Michael and Linda Falter of Facsimile Editions offer yet another solution: the production of facsimiles of important manuscripts as a one-to-one reproduction, designed to imitate the original down to the last detail. The event will focus on the Falters’ stunning recreation of the Catalan Mahzor as well as the original book’s remarkable journey.
After the Nuremberg trials and the start of the Cold War, most of the victors in World War II lost interest in prosecuting Nazi war criminals. Many of the lower-ranking perpetrators quickly blended in with the millions who were seeking to rebuild their lives in a new Europe, while those who felt most at risk fled the continent. The Nazi Hunters focuses on the small band of men and women who refused to allow their crimes to be forgotten—and who were determined to track them down to the farthest corners of the earth. At this book talk, Andrew Nagorski will discuss his new book.
The New York Times bestselling author Lauren Belfer (A Fierce Radiance and City of Light) speaks about her new and passionate novel—inspired by historical events—about two women, one European and one American, and the mysterious choral masterpiece by Johann Sebastian Bach that changes both their lives. In the ruins of Germany in 1945, at the…
In this Book Talk, Peter Schrag, author of When Europe Was a Prison Camp, will appear in conversation with Marion Kaplan.
As German Jews struggled for legal emancipation, they also embarked on a program of cultural renewal, distancing themselves from their fellow Ashkenazim in Poland and giving a special place to the Sephardim of medieval Spain. In an elegantly written new book, John M. Efron (UC Berkeley) explains how German Jews idealized the Sephardim as worldly, morally and intellectually superior, and beautiful, products of the tolerant Muslim environment in which they lived.
Pre-war Jewish life in Hungary from the late 19th through the early 20th centuries was astonishingly diverse in language, religious practice, and lifestyle. Join us for a fascinating evening as scholars of social history delve deeply into the thriving daily lives of these Hungarian, Yiddish, and German-speaking Jews along with author Andras Koerner.
The first volume of its kind, “Dislocated Memories: Jews, Music, and Postwar German Culture” draws together three significant areas of inquiry: Jewish music, German culture, and the legacy of the Holocaust. The volume makes powerful arguments about the impact of the Holocaust and its aftermath in changing contexts of musical performance and composition.