Lewis H. Glinert
From the Biblical books of Jonah and Esther down to Sholem Aleichem and Seinfeld (via Sigmund Freud of course), an unbroken tradition of comedy and satire runs through Jewish stories and jokes, films and cartoons, offering a unique window into the Jewish mind and its self-image.
* "Golem! -- The Making of a Modern Myth"
Using multi-media and snips from Lewis Glinert's BBC documentary "Golem", we trace the history of the ancient Jewish tradition of the Golem, a mystically created artificial man, which has emerged in modern times in fiction, drama, film and even comic strips as one of our great myths: a humanoid with supernatural powers that runs out of control, essentially noble yet undone by tragic circumstance -- and forever reengaging in the struggle to fulfil its life's purpose.
* " Love in a New Land: The Creation of the Israeli Romantic Lyric"
The birth of a new Jewish homeland also marked the birth of a new Jewish music. Pioneers wrote songs of love --love in Israel and love OF Israel --and set their stirring lyrics to an exotic, original fusion of Ashkenazi, Sephardi and Bedouin sounds.
Accompanied by his guitar and recorded music, Professor Glinert will trace Israeli love songs through the 20th century, listening for meaning, musical influences and the voice of a nation's soul.
* "Who are the Israelis? -- The cultural background of Israel and the Arab-Israeli conflict"
Catapulted from the shtetl to the kibbutz, the new Israel once appeared so straightforward and distinctive, but the Six Day War brought euphoria and doubt, and now -- after a generation of Americanization -- we must ask: What makes Israeis tick, and what makes Israel so different?
* "The Drama in the Narrative: Tales of the Baal Shem Tov"
For 250 years the Chasidic tale has been one of the most seminal and enduring of Jewish art forms, and its deceptively simple structure packs a philosophical punch that goes to the heart of Chasidism.
* The Way We Speak: The Joys and Oys of Jewish Language
Using his best-selling "The Joys of Hebrew", Lewis Glinert explores such questions as: What makes Hebrew holy? Why does Yiddish makes us laugh or cry? Do American Jews even today speak a different English?
* "The poetry of Jewish Prayer"
The language and structure of Jewish prayers is a richly crafted fabric, in which allusions to Biblical and Rabbinic figures and themes jostle for our attention in every word and where rabbinic poets used sound play, contrast, multiple meaning and other literary techniques to profound effect.
Last Modified May 19, 2004