2023 Public Programs
The Lonely Child
Featuring Marc Smolowitz & Alix Wall
January 25, 2023
The Lonely Child is a forthcoming feature documentary about a little-known Yiddish lullaby “Dos Elnte Kind” (The Lonely Child) written inside the Vilna Ghetto during the Holocaust. Over 75 years later, the daughter of the girl in the song – Alix Wall – goes on a global quest to find those keeping the song alive, with musicians from around the world performing their own interpretations of it.
Our event screened scenes from the documentary-in-progress, as well as featured an in-person conversation with Smolowitz and Wall (moderated by Dr. Golan Moskowitz), and live musical performances by the New Orleans Klezmer All Stars.
2021-2022 Public Programs
Audrey G. Ratner Speaker Series presents Kosher Soul: Black Jewish Identity Cooking
Featuring Michael W. Twitty
March 9, 2022
In this talk, Michael W. Twitty discussed his experience surrounding food as a Black, Queer, Jewish, Southerner. Mr. Twitty explained that to him, his identities have always been intrinsically tied together, and food is a constant common theme. Food’s power is in its ability to preserve our words and memories, L’dor va dor, from generation to generation, our food is passed down carrying our histories. He expressed his interest in creating fusion, in food and in life, and explained how many Southern dishes were born out of historically African-American traditions. To him, the Jewish and African-American communities are connected in many ways, and our tradition surrounding food and eating is one of the most remarkable. He finds it exceptionally special that members of each group think of one another as “family”, and food is the love language that connects everyone. Mr. Twitty also discussed his upcoming book, Kosher Soul, which explores these connections through interviews.
Rottman Family Lecture presents "If I am Only my Genes, What am I? Jewish Identity and the Genetic Self"
Featuring Producer Paul Root Wolpe, Ph.D.
April 12, 2022
Paul Root Wolpe, Ph.D. is the Raymond Schinazi Distinguished Research Chair of Jewish Bioethics, Professor of Medicine, Pediatrics, Psychiatry, and Sociology, and the Director of the Center for Ethics at Emory University. Wolpe's topic focused on the role that genetics has played in antisemitic thought, Jewish self-identity and definition, and the problems and possibilities for genetics as a tool for Jewish communities.
"Make me a King" Short Film Screening and Talkback
Featuring Producer Martina Russo, writer Natalie Toyne, Yiddish culture consultant Dr. Philip Alexander, and actor Ashleigh Loeb
April 20, 2022
The Grant Center for the American Jewish Experience screened Make Me a King, a short film about Ari, a Jewish Drag King ostracized by their family, who clings to their hero - Pepi Littman, the first Jewish proto-Drag King, who performed in the early 20th century. After the screening, Producer Martina Russo, writer Natalie Toyne, Yiddish culture consultant Dr. Philip Alexander, and actor Ashleigh Loeb were available for Q&A and discussion.
Building Bridges in New Orleans: Jazz and the Making of Cross-Cultural Connections
Featuring John Boutté & Wendell Brunious
May 15th, 2022
In affiliation with the American Jewish Historical Society Biennial Scholars' Conference, the Grant Center for the American Jewish Experience at Tulane University hosted a special program featuring John Boutté and Wendell Brunious (of the Preservation Hall Jazz Band). The event was hosted by Tulane faculty member and musician Glenn Hartman (of the Klezmer All-Stars)
2020-2021 Public Programs
Photo credit : Jennifer Liseo ©ADL, Description: NO HATE. NO FEAR Solidarity March in New York City. 1/5/2020
Featuring Dr. Golan Moskowitz (Tulane University), Jonathan Greenblatt (National Director and CEO of the Anti-Defamation League), Dr. Jonathan Sarna (Brandeis University), and Dr. Magda Teter (Fordham University)
September 9, 2020
Dr. Golan Moskowitz (Tulane University) moderates a conversation about the Anti-Defamation League’s comprehensive new guide to contemporary antisemitism. The distinguished panel includes Jonathan Greenblatt (National Director and CEO of the Anti-Defamation League), Dr. Jonathan Sarna (Brandeis University) and Dr. Magda Teter (Fordham University).
America’s Jewish Women: A History from Colonial Times to Today
Featuring Dr. Pamela S. Nadell
October 14, 2020
What does it mean to be a Jewish woman in America? Dr. Pamela S. Nadell explores her groundbreaking history of how Jewish women maintained their identity and influenced social activism as they wrote themselves into American history. Dr. Nadell’s book won the National Jewish Book Award–Everett Family Foundation Jewish Book of the Year.
Photo credit : Patrick Downs/Los Angeles Times via Getty Images, Description: The cover image from Dr. Golan Moskowitz's (Tulane) book Wild Visionary: Maurice Sendak in Queer Jewish Context (Stanford University Press, 2020).
Wild Visionary: A Book Launch and Conversation on Maurice Sendak
Featuring Dr. Golan Moskowitz (Tulane University); Gregory Maguire, author of Wicked and numerous other works; Brian Selznick, award-winning author and illustrator of The Invention of Hugo Cabret and Harry Potter series' 20th Anniversary covers, and Dr. Marah Gubar (MIT)
April 01, 2021
With the launch of Dr. Golan Moskowitz's book Wild Visionary: Maurice Sendak in Queer Jewish Context (Stanford University Press, 2020), Dr. Marah Gubar (MIT) moderated a conversation between Dr. Moskowitz, Gregory Maguire, and Brian Selznick - both friends and colleagues of Sendak - on Sendak's life and legacy in the Jewish, Queer, and literary world.
Rabbi Shais Rishon (top left), Rabbi Isaama Goldstein-Stoll (top right) Kendell Pinkney (bottom left), Dr. Mia L. Bagneris (bottom right)
Black [but / AND / or] Jewish: A Conversation on Intersections within and across Communities
(co-sponsored by the Africana Studies Department)
Featuring Dr. Mia L. Bagneris, Shais Rishon, Kendell Pinkney, Rabbi Isaama Goldstein-Stoll
April 22, 2021
Dr. Mia L. Bagneris, Associate Professor of African Diaspora Art & Studies of Race in Western Art and Director of the Africana Studies Program, moderated a discussion on starting and changing the conversation about intersectional Jewish identities, what it means to be Black AND Jewish, and how Black Jews can be supported. The talk featured Rabbi and author Shais Rishon, also known by his pen name MaNishtana; theatre-maker, rabbinical student, and Jewish life consultant Kendell Pinkney (JTS, Reboot, LABA, and Ammud); Rabbi and Jewish diversity advocate Rabbi Isaama Goldstein-Stoll (Yale Slifkin Center and B'Chol Lashon).
What do we know about American Jewry? A Conversation on the 2020 Pew Survey of Jewish Americans
Featuring Dr. Ilana Horwitz, Dr. Ari Y. Kelman, Dr. Leonard Saxe, and Dr. Becka A. Alper
May 24, 2021
Dr. Ilana Horwitz, Fields-Rayant Chair in Contemporary Jewish Life at Tulane University, joined by sociological and education experts Dr. Ari Y. Kelman of Stanford, Dr. Leonard Saxe of Brandeis, and Dr. Becka A. Alper of the Pew Research Center in a discussion of the results of the 2020 survey of Jewish Americans.