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2011-05-06T00:00:00.000Z

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Wrong Jonathan Boyarin?

Jonathan Boyarin

Cultural Anthropologist and Yiddish Scholar

Lower East Side Jewish Conservancy

HQ Phone: (212) 374-4100

Lower East Side Jewish Conservancy

235 East Broadway

New York, New York 10002

United States

Company Description

The Lower East Side Jewish Conservancy (LESJC) was created to showcase, through a dynamic and varied touring program, the history and culture of the Jewish community of the Lower East Side. The LESC also serves as the communal agent for historic neighborh ... more

Find other employees at this company (14)

Background Information

Employment History

Ethnographer
Lower East Side Jewish Conservancy

Anthropologist And Ethnographer
LIFESTYLE AND CULTURE OF JEWS THROUGHOUT

Education

doctorate
anthropology
New School

master's degree

New School

undergraduate degree
anthropology
Reed College

Web References (34 Total References)


Lower East Side Jewish Conservancy

www.nycjewishtours.com [cached]

We are happy to share a review of Rebecca Kobrin's book: Jewish Bialystock and its Diaspora by Professor Jonathan Boyarin.

...
We are happy to share a review of Rebecca Kobrin's book: Jewish Bialystock and its Diaspora by Professor Jonathan Boyarin.


Lower East Side Jewish Conservancy

www.lesjc.org [cached]

We are happy to share a review of Rebecca Kobrin's book: Jewish Bialystock and its Diaspora by Professor Jonathan Boyarin.

...
We are happy to share a review of Rebecca Kobrin's book: Jewish Bialystock and its Diaspora by Professor Jonathan Boyarin.


National News

www.jewishtimes.com [cached]

For Jonathan Boyarin, the exchange underscores the vitality and early presence of Yiddish in America.

Boyarin, a cultural anthropologist and Yiddish scholar whose field is 20th century Jewish history, is translating a Yiddish book about the Kotsker rebbe written by noted scholar Abraham Joshua Heschel.
...
Boyarin arrived at the University of Kansas last fall as a professor of modern Jewish studies, his first full-time academic position.
...
Boyarin, 49, grew up in a chicken-farming community in New Jersey and got his undergraduate degree in anthropology from Reed College in Portland, Ore. After college, he plunged into a rigorous Yiddish immersion program at Columbia University.Several weeks into the summer program, he had an epiphany while descending to the subway: He found himself speaking and thinking in Yiddish.
"I was a little gentler toward myself speaking Yiddish.I felt the language coming out from inside me," he recalled.
He went on to earn a master's degree and a doctorate from the New School in anthropology.His doctoral research project took him to Paris for two years in the early 1980s, where he studied the secular Yiddish culture of former Eastern Europeans living there.
One of Boyarin's early academic works was "From A Ruined Garden -- The Memorial Books of Polish Jewry," which he co-authored.The book is a compilation of excerpts from yizker-bikher, or memorial books, crafted by former residents of hundreds of European villages and towns to remember and honor the lives and memories they left behind.Boyarin translated most of the stories in the book.
Years later, Boyarin enrolled in Yale Law School, graduating in 1998.For five years he worked with a New York law firm, doing tax law and litigation, but he still had the Jewish studies bug.
"All along I was saying to myself, 'There's something I really love, I am really good at it, and that's what I should be doing,' " he recalls.Boyarin is unabashedly upbeat about his work.
"We recently passed the point where the number of Yiddish speakers has stopped declining and is starting to grow again," he said, referring to growing enclaves of Chasidic and Orthodox Yiddish-speakers."It is not a dying language."
But the fate of Yiddish is more than a numbers game.
"The measure of the continuing vitality of Yiddish is not only the number of fluent speakers there are," Boyarin said."It is also the ways fragments and elements continue to be rediscovered and transformed into new modes of Jewishness that are genuinely creative.We cannot say beforehand what they are going to become."
One example is the vital klezmer music scene.
Boyarin expressed an interest in several Jewish farming communes that failed long ago on the hard plains of Kansas.And then there are the whispered conversations of Bondi and Weiner floating on a stiff Kansas breeze, summoning Boyarin to new battlefields.


Lower East Side Jewish Conservancy

www.nycjewishtours.org [cached]

With her husband, Professor Jonathan Boyarin, a well-known Jewish anthropologist and ethnographer, they have raised their children to love the Lower East Side and its traditions.


Lower East Side Jewish Conservancy

www.nycjewishtours.com [cached]

With her husband, Professor Jonathan Boyarin, a well-known Jewish anthropologist and ethnographer, they have raised their children to love the Lower East Side and its traditions.

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