A podcast featuring interviews and in-depth discussion of new research and enduring debates about Jewish history and culture and why it matters.


Polish Jewish Refugees in the Wartime Soviet Union with Eliyana Adler

Eliyana Adler joins us to talk about Polish Jews who fled to the Soviet Union in 1939, and who subsequently survived the Second World War and the Holocaust in Siberia and Central Asia. Listen in as we discuss her book Survival on the Margins: Polish Jewish Refugees in the Wartime Soviet Union, and the big picture issues it raises about how we understand the Holocaust, what it means to be a survivor, and the paradoxes of history: those Jews who were deported by the Soviet Union found themselves far away from the Nazi genocide.

Continue reading

American Judaism Beyond the Synagogue with Rachel B. Gross

Rachel B. Gross talks about nostalgia and lived religion in American Jewish life, which is the focus of her book Beyond the Synagogue: Jewish Nostalgia as Religious Practice. Listen in as we talk about a variety of ways in which American Jews connect to their past through nostalgia—through historical museums like the Eldridge Street Synagogue in New York’s Lower East Side, through genealogy, through children’s books and dolls, and through delis and other foodways. As Rachel explains, nostalgia actually offers a kind of lived religious practice, even if it is beyond the synagogue.

Continue reading