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.
How my Father Lost his Faith
Eugene Orenstein recounts his father's childhood first in a kheder and then studying at a Yeshiva. He explains how reading one book led his father to lose his religious faith at a young age.
This is an excerpt from an oral history with Eugene Orenstein.
This excerpt is in English.
Eugene Orenstein was born in Bronx, New York in 1945.
This interview is part of the Yiddish in the Academy: scholars, language instructors, and students series.
Other video highlights from this oral history
How my Father Lost his Faith2 minutes 20 seconds
His Mother's Story4 minutes 7 seconds
A Coop in the Bronx1 minute 35 seconds
A Unique Jewish Community2 minutes 15 seconds
"Shul Number Eins": Memories From The First Yiddish School in New York2 minutes 17 seconds
the importance of learning languages3 minutes 24 seconds
Camp Kinderland3 minutes 29 seconds
"A De-Judaized Yiddish"2 minutes 31 seconds
From the Polish Army to Cuba3 minutes
Jewish Students' Changing Relationship to Yiddish2 minutes 13 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?