Jewish Affairs - Chanukah 2018

In this issue, the distinguished journalist, author and editor Jeremy Gordin provides a perspective on the significance and continued relevance of the Rambam/Maimonides from both a personal and academic perspective. This is followed by the latest in veteran contributor Bernard Katz’s “A Brief Journey Through…” series looking at some of the main centres of Jewish life in Europe and the Near East from the earliest times until today. This time he focuses on the Jewish presence in Hungary over the centuries. For his part, regular contributor David Sher has focused on various aspects of the Anglo-Jewish heritage over the years. In this issue, he looks at the Jewish community in South Manchester.

The darker side of Jewish life in Europe features in Part IV of Don Krausz’s Holocaust memoir ‘Child of the Concentration Camp’, covering his incarceration in Sachsenhausen and the Death March that he and his fellow survivors were forced to undertake in the dying months of the war.

In ‘The Battle over Velvel’s Velvet  (Keidan, 1816)’ tireless Gwynne Schrire produces a skilfully fictionalised account of an intra-communal clash that actually occurred in early 19th Century Keidan, Lithuania. It can be read in tandem with Sorrel Kerbel’s review of ‘The Keidan Memorial (Book) – A New Translation’, the latest in a growing body of reprints and compilations of records, memoirs and translations relating to Lithuanian and South African Jewish history to be brought out by David Solly Sandler. Related to the theme of translations into English, Egonne Kirsh assesses the Jewish-themed poetry of Olga Kirsh, who uniquely wrote her poetry almost exclusively in Afrikaans even after she had made aliyah.  

Under ‘Fiction’, Charlotte Cohen’s ‘The Grandmaster (All In The Game)’ uses Chess as a metaphor for how to approach life, through a touchingly-portrayed relationship between a boy and his grandfather. Elsewhere in the issue, we have new poetry by Bernard Levinson and Charlotte Cohen and a review by Milton Shain of a new book on the 1903 Kishinev Pogrom by Steven J Zipperstein.

On behalf of the Editorial Board, I wish everyone a Chanukah Sameach and a safe and restful end-of-year break.


Read the  publication here.

Recent Articles

Above Board 4.10.19

Encouraging progress for new Country Communities body

Earlier this year, it was decided to establish a new organisation, called the Small Jewish Communities Association (SJCA) to take over the work of the SAJBD’s Country Communities Department from the beginning of next year. At a meeting of trustees representing some of the smaller communities from various provinces on Sunday, encouraging progress was made in getting the SJCA up and running.

Above Board 27.9.19

People tend to be suspicious of change. As the thinking goes, if things have worked well enough in the past, why not carry on as before? On the other hand, circumstances inevitably do change, and when this reaches a point when the old ways of doing things are no longer sufficiently efficient and/or cost effective, then one is equally inevitably required to adapt to the new realities in order to remain sustainable.