A growing collection of in-depth interviews with people of all ages and backgrounds, whose stories about the legacy and changing nature of Yiddish language and culture offer a rich and complex chronicle of Jewish identity.
A Time I Felt Aware of My Jewishness: Serving in World War II
Prompted with the question, "Is there a time you felt particularly Jewish," Albert Dinner jokes about the Jewish circumcision ritual most male newborns face. After some thought, Leonard Strear remembers being acutely aware of his Jewishness while serving in World War II. He recalls what it was like to be a minority, experiencing anti-semitism from other soldiers and remembers celebrating high holidays while serving overseas.
This is an excerpt from an oral history with Leonard Strear and Albert Dinner.
This excerpt is in English.
Other video highlights from this oral history
A Time I Felt Aware of My Jewishness: Serving in World War II3 minutes 25 seconds
Sharing Our Family Pictures2 minutes 43 seconds
Kiddush at the Distillery2 minutes 55 seconds
Landing on the Beaches of Normandy51 seconds
Driving Around Town in a Jack Benny Maxwell with Friend2 minutes 8 seconds
How My Judaism Has Changed Over the Years: Reflections on Relationship to Shul1 minute 52 seconds
Our Advice1 minute 53 seconds
My First Time Eating Shellfish1 minute 2 seconds
"Bubbe Maytse"2 minutes 5 seconds
Growing up in Greeley, Colorado2 minutes 21 seconds
Describing the Rodeo2 minutes 20 seconds
Our Favorite Yiddish Phrases1 minute 51 seconds
Liberating a Concentration Camp in Czechoslovakia During World War II1 minute 57 seconds
"I Could Do Everything a Cowboy Could Do"2 minutes 17 seconds
Experiences of Anti-Semitism While Serving in the War1 minute 59 seconds
The Last Patrol1 minute 50 seconds
About the Wexler Oral History Project
Since 2010, the Yiddish Book Center’s Wexler Oral History Project has recorded more than 500 in-depth video interviews that provide a deeper understanding of the Jewish experience and the legacy and changing nature of Yiddish language and culture.
Tell Us Your Story
Do you (or someone you know) have stories to share about the importance of Yiddish language and culture in your life?