Monthly Archives: October 2020

1 November: Poetry Evening

An evening of poetry with some members of our community. We will hear them read their own and others’ poetry with text available online. Taking part are: Joyce Caplan, Heather Valencia, Ellen Galford, David Bleiman, Geraldine Gould, Jenni Calder. We have not chosen a theme as we are hoping for a varied and inclusive experience for us all!

If you are on the Lit mailing list you will be sent joining information on the morning of the meeting. If you are not on the Lit list but would like to attend, please register here. After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting. 

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18 October: Aviva Ben-Ur, ‘Centering Slavery: The Jewish Community of Suriname, 1651-1825’

In the 18th century, the Dutch colony of Suriname in South America was home to arguably the most privileged Jewish community of its time. On the banks of its main river, Jews of Iberian ancestry founded their own village, surrounded by Jewish-owned plantations that were worked by African slaves. Among these Jews were slaveowners who converted some of their children to Judaism. This talk, based on the author’s recently published book Jewish Autonomy in a Slave Society, centres the concept of the “slave society” as a way to understand the Dutch colony’s Portuguese Jewish community in terms of its economy, politics, and identity. The book may be ordered online at a discount; details are on the attached flyer.

Aviva Ben-Ur is Professor in the Department of Judaic and Near Eastern Studies at the University of Massachusetts Amherst, U.S.A. A historian specialising in Atlantic Jewish history, she is the author of Remnant Stones: The Jewish Cemeteries and Synagogues of Suriname: Essays (Hebrew Union College Press, 2012) and Remnant Stones: The Jewish Cemeteries of Suriname: Epitaphs (Hebrew Union College Press, 2009), both co-authored with Rachel Frankel; Sephardic Jews in America: A Diasporic History (New York University Press, 2009), and Jewish Autonomy in a Slave Society: Suriname in the Atlantic World, 1651-1825 (University of Pennsylvania Press, 2020).

Please register in advance for this meeting. 

After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting. This event will be recorded. By attending you consent to being part of the recording.

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Filed under 5781 / 2020-21 Programme