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Three of this year’s events will be moderated by faculty of the Frankel Center for Judaic Studies at the University of Michigan

The 2020 Ann Arbor Jewish Book Festival will be held online as well, with most events free and open to the public. The annual festival celebrating Jewish authors is organized by the Jewish Community Center of Ann Arbor and is supported by the Jewish Federation of Ann Arbor. Go to book.jccannarbor.org to see the full list of events.

Three of this year’s events will be moderated by faculty of the Frankel Center for Judaic Studies at the University of Michigan. Samuel Shetzer Associate Professor of American Jewish Studies Julian Levinson will host an event with Miriam Udel at 11 a.m. Sunday, Dec. 13. Udel will be discussing Honey on the Page: A Treasury of Yiddish Children’s Literature, an unprecedented treasure of Yiddish children’s stories and poems enhanced with original illustrations. Honey on the Page holds nearly 50 stories and poems for children, translated from the original Yiddish.

Honey on the Page
Honey on the Page

At 7 p.m. Tuesday, Dec. 15, Assistant Professor of Judaic Studies Devi Mays will join author Sarah Stein as she presents her book, Family Papers: A Sephardic Journey Through the Twentieth Century. The 2019 release was named one of the best books of the year by The Economist, a New York Times Book Review Editors’ Choice and a National Jewish Book Award finalist.

In Family Papers, Stein uses the Levy family’s correspondence to tell their history. For centuries, the bustling port city of Salonica, Macedonia, was home to the sprawling Levy family. As leading publishers and editors, they helped chronicle modernity as it was experienced by Sephardic Jews across the Ottoman Empire. The wars of the 20th century, however, redrew the borders around them, in the process transforming the Levys from Ottomans to Greeks. Family members soon moved across boundaries and hemispheres, stretching the familial diaspora from Greece to Western Europe, Israel, Brazil and India. In time, the Holocaust nearly eviscerated the clan, eradicating whole branches of the family tree.

Karla Goldman, the Sol Drachler Professor of Social Work and director of the Jewish Communal Leadership Program, will moderate an event with author Esther Safran Foer at 1 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 17, as she presents her book, I Want You to Know We’re Still Here: A Post-Holocaust Memoir. Foer is a writer and the former executive director of Sixth & I Synagogue in Washington, D.C. After learning that her father had a previous wife and daughter, both killed during the Holocaust, Foer travels to Ukraine to learn about them and how her father survived during the war.

See the full lineup at https://book.jccannarbor.org/schedule.

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