Yiddish in Sydney

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How Sydney’s Yiddish speakers keep their beloved language alive

Yiddish may be flourishing in Melbourne but in Sydney, which hosted Australia’s first Yiddish shows, it has been on a long decline. In a two-part podcast, Dash Lawrence finds out why. LISTEN HERE

In Episode two (published Friday 23 October), we meet Sydney’s last remaining formalised Yiddish group – the Sunday group – who meet once a month for a schmooze and bagel. Numbering around 30, these babyboomer women (and a small number of men) are passionate about the language’s survival. For them, Yiddish evokes childhood memories; speaking it is a tribute parent’s generation and a commitment to keep their memory alive.

But when they too pass on, who will be left to foster Yiddish? Do streaming services, language apps, streaming services and Zoom meetings hold the key to Yiddish’s future in the 21st century?

Yiddish language researcher and teacher, Professor Rebecca Margolis of the Australian Centre for Jewish Civilisation, shares her vision for Yiddish-speaking communities in Sydney and beyond.

Period15 Oct 2020

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