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Half/Life: Jew-ish Tales from Interfaith Homes
Jewish Book Council
Edited by Laurel Snyder
Written by authors born into the so-called "dilemma of intermarriage," the stories in Half/Life explore the experience of being raised in a half-Jewish home. Though each essay is distinct, and the experiences are vastly different, each describes growing up without a streamlined identity, unsure of community or religious direction.
The Goychik Dilemma
By Unorthodox for Tablet Magazine
Unorthodox, the world’s leading Jewish podcast, takes questions from its listeners about all aspects of Jewish life, from the religiously profound to the utterly inconsequential. Every week, we discuss one of these questions in “Ask Unorthodox.” If you have a question, please send it to [email protected].
“How and when,” podcast listener Robin asks our Facebook group, “do you tell your family that you’re dating a goychik? Especially when they won’t see it coming.”
No Broken Glass
By Richard L. Eisenberg for Tablet Magazine
As a rabbi, I didn’t want Jewish rituals in my daughter’s interfaith wedding
When friends heard that our daughter was marrying a non-Jew, some of them assumed that she would include some Jewish traditions in her wedding. After all, my wife and I are observant Jews, and I was a pulpit rabbi for 35 years. Surely, they may have thought, even if our daughter was marrying outside the fold, we would take every opportunity to make her wedding as traditional as possible. They were surprised, then, to hear that her wedding ceremony was secular, devoid of Judaism. “Why wasn’t there a hora?” they asked. “No breaking the glass?” “You didn’t want a chuppah?” “Why didn’t you do the ceremony?”
Our Diverse Jewish Families
This organization is based in the San Francisco Bay Area. Have you thought about starting a similar organization in your area?
Last week we had a powerful discussion about parenting in a multiracial Jewish family. I was struck by a young Black Jew who said he wants his white parents to talk with him about racism. We heard about slips of the tongue, misguided statements, things that we, the white majority can learn to do better. One mother in a multiracial family said, “I wish I’d brought all my white friends.” We hear the ways in which parents anticipate difficulty and work to disarm it before it hits their children. I really wish we’d taped it. I’ll have to do that next time.
A Twisted Thing: An Interfaith Story
Note: The following letter was sent to us by a visitor to our site in response to an earlier “issue“. We invite others to share their viewpoints with us.
The pasuk (verse) says: A twisted thing cannot be straightened, and that which is missing cannot be numbered. (Koheles 1:15).
My story is a different sort of an interfaith story. It does not include struggling with the December dilemma or deciding whether the children should go to church or temple, or Christmas trees and latkes, or “a celebration of our differences.”
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