Jewish History for Teens

Four Millenia of Great Diversity — In 300+ Pages by Gerald Sorin From the Spring, 2015 issue of Jewish Currents Reviewed in this Essay: The Veterans of History: A Young Person’s History of the Jews, by Mitchell Silver. Center for Jewish Culture and Social Justice, 2014, 334 pages. MITCHELL SILVER IS A CONSUMMATE STORYTELLER, and […]

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More on “Selma” and Progressive Jews

by Joel Shatzky I RECENTLY SAW the film Selma and read the very comprehensive and moving response to it at the Jewish Currents website by Al Vorspan concerning the absence in the movie of Rabbi Abraham Joshua Heschel, who was pictured in an iconic 1964 photo marching in the front line with Martin Luther King, […]

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February 14: Frederick Douglass’ Lover

Abolitionist champion Frederick Douglass was born a slave in Maryland in February, 1818 and chose this date as his birthday. He had a twenty-eight year love affair with Ottilie Assing, a writer and journalist who was the daughter of a prominent German Jewish doctor and a Lutheran mother. Assing emigrated to the U.S. in 1852 […]

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January 12: Walter Mosley

Novelist and essayist Walter Mosley, the son of an African-American father and Jewish mother, was born in Los Angeles on this date in 1952. His Jewish relatives “were all socialists, communists from Eastern Europe,” he told Moment magazine in 2010. “They didn’t come here to go to shul, they came here to build that ideal […]

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November 22: Integrating Jazz

Norman Granz, the founder of five jazz record labels who was a significant activist for racial integration in public performances during the 1940s and ’50s, died in Geneva, Switzerland on this date in 2001. Granz organized (on borrowed money) the famous “Jazz at the Philharmonic” jam session series in L.A. in 1944 and ’45, which […]

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November 15: African-American Jews on TV

Two successful television actors who are both black and Jewish share this date as birthdays: Yaphet Kotto, born in New York in 1939; and Lisa Bonet, born to a Jewish mother and black father in San Francisco in 1967. Kotto, best known for his role on the detective series, Homicide: Life on the Street, wrote […]

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Channel Esther: Infinite Possibilities

By Esther Cohen I AM THE EMBODIMENT OF INFINITE POSSIBLITIES (First Corinthian Baptist Church) A few thousand people (yes) wait in line for the third service of the morning, at the Black Church in Harlem where my South African daughter in law Chesray Dolpha, attends most Sundays. I am not a stranger to religious institutions […]

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