Benjamin Whorf

One God, Many Tongues

05/01/2009

Last month, while in the Brussels airport on my way back from Israel, I found myself behind an elderly bearded Jew. While waiting for our flights, we began chatting and I asked him — in Yiddish — if he spoke Yiddish. Though we had already spoken in two other languages, Hebrew and English, the transformation that came over him on hearing this third language was amazing. Yiddish created a link between us that the other languages had not been able to do.

One God, Many Tongues

The multilingual author believes that Jewish languages help to express Jewishness, and that knowing other languages is essential to understanding the world

05/01/2009
Last month, while in the Brussels airport on my way back from Israel, I found myself behind an elderly bearded Jew. While waiting for our flights, we began chatting and I asked him — in Yiddish — if he spoke Yiddish.
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