This year’s edition of the New York Jewish Film Festival has been an instructive experience. Even a program as large as this one cannot claim to be representative; there are simply too many Jewish filmmakers working in too many different political, socioeconomic and even geographical contexts to be given voice. However, a few tentative conclusions can be drawn, with the final handful of movies serving nicely to underline our findings.
"It’s not an easy thing being a leader,” said Niemat Adam Ahmadi, coordinator of the Darfur Diaspora Association of East Africa, a coalition of organizations that are trying to aid refugees from Darfur and are hoping to take an active role in rebuilding the war-torn province. At times, said Ahmadi, 37, the members and staff of any group could pin their hopes on a particular leader but wind up disappointed — one of her biggest fears.
Sunday, October 12th, 2008
If this a depression, let’s take a trip to a rooming house porch, 1938.
Indians pitcher Bob Feller recently spoke to Terry Pluto, the Cleveland Plain Dealer sportswriter (and religion writer) about the time, in 1938, when the future Hall of Famer lived modestly, in a rooming house.
He was 19, son of an Iowa farmer.
In 1902, on the 11th of Nisan, in the Ukrainian village of Nikolaev, Chana Schneerson, the mother of newborn Menachem Mendel, the future and seventh Lubavitcher rebbe, receives a telegram from her cousin, the fifth rebbe, Sholom Dov Ber. Before feeding the baby, he writes, she should ritually wash her hands as if before meals or prayer. When the baby cries, his parents, by candlelight, pour water over his little hands and into a small basin by his cradle.