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.
"Saturday night was like a salon at our house."
Harriet Bonfeld, educator and daughter of Yiddish poet and journalist Leon Feinberg, describes a typical social gathering with her parents' friends, Yiddish "intelligentsia" from Itzik Manger to Chaim Grade.
This is an excerpt from an oral history with Harriet Bonfeld.
This excerpt is in English.
This interview is part of the Beyond the Books: Yiddish writers and their descendants series.
Other video highlights from this oral history
"Saturday night was like a salon at our house."1 minute 35 seconds
The Languages We Spoke at Home (parents' languages)1 minute 4 seconds
"He was very dapper": Memories of Yiddish poet Leon Feinberg1 minute 12 seconds
My Advice to Future Generations (advice Love and Honor your parents)41 seconds
"But We Knew Him on All Sides": Why We Wanted to Talk About Our Father48 seconds
"He was very loving and devoted to us." (Remembering father)1 minute 53 seconds
"Yiddish is still a part of my life."53 seconds
Undzer Kamp2 minutes 45 seconds
"Everyone always looked up to him..."1 minute 1 second
"Religion is a very personal thing." (transmission)2 minutes 1 second
"I always felt different."1 minute 14 seconds
Coming to Terms with Realities of Communism (Father Happy in the U.S. and Dissillunsioned with Communism)1 minute 57 seconds
My Father's Story of Storming the Winter Palace1 minute 30 seconds
"He Used To Call Me Meydele": Fond Memories of my Father, the Yiddish Writer Leon Feinberg1 minute 39 seconds
"They Were Happy Memories": living with their father, a Yiddish writer1 minute 34 seconds
Dreydl with Dad1 minute 17 seconds
Yiddish Will Never Die55 seconds
Cooking for Seven1 minute 9 seconds
Our Yiddish Seder (Yiddish Passover seders)1 minute 49 seconds
A Yiddish Education ("I felt very proud.")1 minute 41 seconds
More information about this oral history excerpt
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.
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