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New YIVO Jewish Culture Series to be Launched at Riverdale Temple

PRESS NEWS: For immediate release
Contact: Suzanne Leon
Assistant Director
YIVO Institute for Jewish Research
15 West 16th Street
New York, NY 10011
tel. 917.606.8227

Contact: Yvette Marrin
Chair, Adult Education Com.
Riverdale Temple
4545 Independence Avenue
Riverdale, NY 10471
tel. 718.548.3800 ext. 1

New YIVO Jewish Culture Series to be Launched at Riverdale Temple on Sunday, November 20

(New York, NY - November 3, 2011) Sunday, November 20 at the Riverdale Temple inaugurates the first of a four-part lecture series that will launch the new Jewish Culture Series (YIVO Yidishe kultur-serye). This Jewish Culture Series is the first community outreach program for the YIVO Institute for Jewish Research as it expands its educational initiatives.

The Riverdale Temple worked in partnership with YIVO to develop and present the initial lecture series and is the first community-based host for this innovative program. All events are free of charge and open to the public. The lectures are scheduled for November 20, 2011, and March 11, April 1 and May 20, in 2012.

Eighty percent of American Jews are descendants of Eastern Europe but have little knowledge of their own history and cultural heritage. The new YIVO Jewish Culture Series is designed to introduce American Jews to various aspects of East European Jewish culture and history and explore its impact and meaning on Jewish life today.

“The new YIVO Jewish Culture Series is an essential new step for the YIVO Institute in building Jewish identity through knowledge of our 1000-year history in Eastern Europe. 80% of American Jews still live largely in the shadow of that world. It is our inheritance. Our children should be proud to possess it. Knowledge of it will help us answer not just what we are, but who.”
—Jonathan Brent, YIVO Executive Director

YIVO plans to expand this program to other American Jewish communities across the United States, particularly those in or close to large metropolitan centers.

Dr. Jonathan Brent, YIVO Executive Director, will speak about “The Other World of Sholem Aleichem, Isaac Babel, Philip Roth” on November 20 at 2:00pm at Riverdale Temple on Independence Avenue (246th Street).

ABOUT YIVO: Founded in 1925, the YIVO Institute is headquartered in New York City, and is the world’s premier teaching and research institute devoted to East European Jewish Studies; the Yiddish language, literature, and folklore; and the American Jewish Experience.

ABOUT RIVERDALE TEMPLE: Established in 1947 as the first congregation in the Riverdale section of the Bronx, Riverdale Temple is affiliated with the Union for Reform Judaism. It is committed to an inclusive approach to Jewish life and shares a common desire to study and celebrate with open minds, intellectual curiosity and integrity, and a loving respect for Jewish history and heritage.