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Samplings from the New York Jewish Film Festival

by Mitchell Abidor   THE ALWAYS INTERESTING New York Jewish Film Festival will be running from January 10 to January 23 at the Film Society of Lincoln Center. Information on screenings can be found at nyjff.org. What follows is just a sample of the riches on view. The Romanian director Radu Jude is one of the […]

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Oy, Rumania, Rumania

by Marty Roth Discussed in this essay: For Two Thousand Years, by Mihail Sebastian. Published in 1934, now translated by Philip Ó Ceallaigh into English, 2017, Other Press, 256 pages.   ARTHUR MILLER said that the Romanian Jewish writer Mihail Sebastian (1907-1945) wrote like Chekhov; Philip Roth that Sebastian’s Journal 1935-1944 deserves to be on the same shelf as The […]

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June 1: Romania’s Top Fascist

Ion Antonescu, the fascist prime minister of Romania who allied the country with Nazi Germany and eagerly prosecuted genocidal attacks against his country’s Jews and Gypsies, was executed for war crimes on this date in 1946. Antonescu was a lifelong antisemite whose father had divorced his mother to marry a convert to Judaism. He was also a lifelong […]

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Paul Celan as Existentialist Poet

THE COMPLEX BEAUTY OF HIS LATE POEMS by Marc Jampole from the Autumn 2016 issue of Jewish Currents Discussed in this essay: Breathturn into Timestead: The Collected Later Poetry, by Paul Celan, translated from the German by Pierre Joris. Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2014, 736 pages. MOST PEOPLE know poets by one or two poems […]

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August 18: Rescuing Students at Virginia Tech

Dr. Liviu Librescu, an aeronautics engineer who died while holding off the gunman in the 2007 Virginia Tech mass shooting long enough for all but one of his students to escape through a window at his direction, was born in Romania on this date in 1930. He survived the Holocaust as a youth in a […]

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Reflections on Rehab

by Harold Ticktin HERE IN CLEVELAND we have the mightily named Montefiore complex, a charitable megalith combining all the various kinds of succor to  aging, mostly (but far from only) Jewish recoverees from falls, bladder infections, muscular failings and, of course, diabetes-related impairment. I write at the tail end of a four-week excursion after an […]

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October 23: The Holocaust in Odessa

On this date in 1941, only a week after the German and Romanian armies had seized control of Odessa, some 5,000 Jews in the city were publicly hanged and shot, and more than 19,000 Jews in the city were assembled in nine gunpowder warehouses at the port and shot dead before the warehouses were set […]

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May 12: Saul Steinberg

Romanian-born cartoonist and graphic artist Saul Steinberg died at 84 on this date in 1999. A refugee from fascism in Italy, he worked for U.S. military intelligence during World War II while establishing a lifelong relationship with the New Yorker magazine, which had sponsored his entry into the U.S. after publishing one of his cartoons […]

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June 27: The Iasi Pogrom

On this date in 1941, Romanian fascist dictator Ion Antonescu, an ally of Nazi Germany, ordered the commander of the military garrison in Iasi to “cleanse” the city of its Jewish population. This set in motion a week-long pogrom that killed more than 13,000. The pogrom followed the invasion of the USSR by Nazi Germany; […]

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