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Jewish culture

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The History of the Catskills' Resorts

Writer Stefan Kanfer's latest book is called "A Summer World," about the Borscht Belt -- a Jewish enclave in the Catskills that nurtured a generation of comics. Kanfer talks about the lives of some of the resorts' regulars, and why some the community is now in decline.


Merchant Seaman Captain Rudolph Patzert Discusses "Running the Palestine Blockade."

Merchant Seaman Captain Rudolph Patzert. In 1947 he captained a ship that was part of a clandestine effort by the Jewish underground to smuggle Holocaust survivors into Palestine. Palestine at that time was under British rule, and a British air and sea blockade prevented immigration to the country. Patzert's ship, the Paducah, was a 45 year-old rundown converted gunboat, his crew inexperienced; and they were thwarted every step of the way: British intelligence hounded them, preventing them from refueling and re-watering.


Ways to Bring Lapsed Jews Back to the Faith

Editor, author, and Jewish theologian Michael Lerner is founder and editor of "Tikkun" magazine, a bimonthly Jewish critique of politics, culture, and society. In his new book, "Jewish Renewal: A Path to Healing and Transformation," Lerner presents a new interpretation of Jewish texts and history, and a new approach to God and prayer.


Art Spiegelman and His Father's Tale of Survival

Spiegelman is the author of "Maus," for which he won a Pulitzer Prize, and "Maus II." The two book-length comics are accounts of his parents' experiences in the Holocaust. He is also co-founder and editor of "Raw," a magazine of avant-garde comics. His latest work is the illustration of "The Wild Party," by Joseph Moncure March. We replay our 1987 interview with him. (Rebroadcast)


Writer Elie Weisel Bears Witeness to Memories of the Holocaust

Writer and humanitarian Elie Weisel won the 1986 Nobel Peace Prize for his message of "peace and atonement and human dignity." A concentration camp survivor, he has been the most impassioned and poetic supporter of efforts to memorialize the six million Jews who died in Hitler's death camps. His most recent book is "The Forgotten," published in 1992. This interview was first broadcast in 1988. (Rebroadcast)


A Jewish Filmmaker on Interviewing Nazis

Documentary filmmaker Marcel Ophuls is best known for his 1970 work "The Sorrow and the Pity," about the conduct of the French people during the Holocaust. We rebroadcast a clip of him discussing how he feels when he speaks to Nazis or former Nazis about the war. (Rebroadcast)


Professor and Writer Andre Aciman on Egyptian Anti-Semitism

Aciman is the author of "Out of Egypt: A Memoir." The book follows Aciman's close-knit, flamboyant Jewish family through 50 years of residence in Alexandria. The family was forced to leave Egypt when Aciman was 14, during a long wave of Anti-Semitism and Arab nationalism.


Finding the Sarajevo Haggadah.

Photojournalist Edward Serotta has documented the community of Bosnian Jews in Sarajevo, and their efforts to rescue their Muslim, Serb, and Croat friends and neighbors during the siege. His book is "Survival in Sarajevo: How a Jewish Community Came to the Aid of its City." (Central Europe Center for Research & Documentation). Terry will also talk with him about his recent trip to Sarajevo to look for the the legendary Sarajevo Haggadah -- a 700 year old Spanish masterpiece that's valued at 10 million dollars. During the Holocaust, Muslims hid it from the Nazis.

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