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Next Year in New Jersey

by Rebecca Boroson   “THIS IS A NIGHT for Elijah,” says 7-year-old Bram. The wind is battering the trees and sending the clouds running for cover. And it does, indeed, seem like a night for the biblical prophet, for whom Bram will open the door during the seder — and who may invisibly, if he deigns, […]

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The Jewish Chicken Farmers of Petaluma: Why Remember?

Part 2 by Kenneth Kann To read Part 1, click here.   I CONDUCTED hundreds more interviews in the years ahead: the children of the immigrants, the grandchildren, and the new suburban settlers who inherited the community. The immigrant children were the generation of my own American-born parents. Here was an assimilation drama. They grew up […]

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Immigrant Names and Issues of Assimilation

OBSERVATIONS ON CONTEMPORARY NAMING PRACTICES by Joel Shatzky As an adjunct professor at Kingsborough Community College/CUNY for the last decade (after a thirty-seven year career at SUNY, Cortland), I have noticed trends in students’ names that seem to reveal their parents’ desire to establish a sense of identity distinctly of their own choice. This is in some […]

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Naming and Renaming

By Ann Cheng WHEN MY mother’s mother fled Eastern Europe for the U.S., she was on her fourth last name — the Jewish one she was born with, the non-Jewish one her family chose in the late 1930s, the French one from a fake marriage staged to escape Communist Hungary, and finally the recently chosen, […]

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O My America: California Millennials

by Lawrence Bush AT THE TWO seders I attended this year, and throughout the eight days of Passover, the “Four Children” was the theme on which I obsessed. On the first night, I was guest at a seder attended by more millennials than baby-boomers — a first in my experience — and I was completely charmed by […]

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Jewish Identity: Is the Magic Gone?

by George Salamon “No one speaks for the Jews. We are the people of the great fraction; the whole of us must always be described as the number of Jews divided by the number of Jews.” —Earl Shorris The “Great Fraction” — it made Jewish communities in the Diaspora alluring and infuriating. It was a […]

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