L.A. • N.Y. • S.F. • D.C.

Daphna Shalom


A few things to look forward to...

[D.C] Fri/Sat/Sun, April 12-14 — The Arab Novel: Visions of Social Reality CCAS 2002 annual Spring Symposium

Starts Friday morning, 8:30-9:15 with registration. Novelists include Elmaz Abinader * Kamal Abu Deeb * * Diana Abu-Jaber * Faisal Al-Darraj * * Gamal Al-Ghitani * Edwar Al-Kharrat * Hanaan Al-Shaykh * * Roger Allen * Magda Al-Nowaihi * Gaber Asfour * Aida Bamia * Halim Barakat * Miriam Cooke * Amira El-Zein * Ferial Ghazzoul * Elias Khoury * Abdelfattah Kilito * Abdulrahman Munif * * Gregory Orfalea * Bahaa¹ Taher * Fuad Tikerli. For complete details, visit the Center for Contemporary Arab Studies web site. Or call organizer Leah Harris, (202) 687-6215; 687-5793.

[N.Y.] Sunday, April 21, 9:00 am sharp, Dr. Zvi Zohar on Sephardic Rabbis of the Middle East Take on the Modern World

Zvi Zohar is an eminent scholar of Sephardic studies who teaches at Bar Ilan University and the Shalom Hartman Institute. Please Note: Class Will be in English - Texts Discussed Will be in Hebrew. This is an opportunity to learn how Sephardic Judaism's greatest thinkers work within a modern, tolerant, creative context. Again, 9 a.m. sharp At the Shasha Home, 1156 East 5th Street Brooklyn NY Please David Shasha to confirm your attendance.

[D.C.] April 22 (Mon.), 12:00 Noon— Lecture on the Jews of Iraq by Dr. David Kazzaz

Where: Library of Congress, Room G-51 (Madison Building). Dr. Kazzaz is author of Mother of the Pound: Memoirs on the Life andHhistory of the Iraqi Jews. Born in Baghdad, Dr. Kazzaz graduated medical school from the American University in Beirut in the 1940's. He moved to Israel in 1950 and then moved to the United States to complete his psychiatric residency at the University of Colorado in Denver, where he still lives. Lecture free to the public.

[N.Y.] Monday, April 22, 6:00 pm Life in the Damn Tropics: Book Party/Reading Celebrating David Unger's New Book

Meet David Unger and hear excerpts from "Life in the Damn Tropics" (Syracuse University Press) on April 22 at the Americas Society, 680 Park Avenue at 68th St New York, NY 10021. RSVP ACCEPTANCES ONLY, call 21-249-8950 ext.369. Also Thursday, April 25 at 7:15 pm, the Teachers & Writers Collaborative, 5 Union Square West, 7th Floor New York, NY 10003 (Doors locked at 8 PM)

" Ša witty book, ebullient in its observations about the human heart and mind, and the caprices of destiny." Oscar Hijuelos

Read more about this book!

[L.A..] Saturday, April 27, 6:30 pm—Kurdish American Education Society Dinner Features Keynote Speaker Arun Gandhi of the Mahatma Gandhi Institute for Nonviolence

The Kurdish American Education Society honors Dr. Fouad Darweesh, a distinguished Kurdish-American leader. K.A.E.S. is a nonprofit organization established to promote cultural and educational bonds between the people of the United States and the Kurdish people of the Middle East. Dr. Fouad Darweesh is a Kurdish-American physician who has worked for humantarian causes. Arun Gandhi is a profoundly compelling speaker. The dinner and presentation are only $30 per seat Beckman Hall, Room 404, Chapman University, Orange, CA. For directions call 714-997-6815.

For complete information, click here, print the form and mail it in, or call 909-981-2444,  714-738-1785, or 949-380-4347 for further info.

[L.A..] Sunday, April 28, 2:30-7:30 pm—Jacques Derrida: The Last and Least of the Jews, First Annual Conference on the Impact of Jewish Thought on European Civilization at UCLA

"Politically active and deeply committed to furthering the course of social justice, Jacques Derrida has speculated that his early childhood experiences of intense anti-Semitism which, among other things, led to his expulsion from the Algerian public schools at an early age, prompted him to devote his life work to rethinking positions of racism, power, and oppression using his sharp and surprising analytical skills to address the ways in which they overtly and covertly operate. As such his work has opened up spaces of critical thought to a wide variety of cultures and forces informing a wide range of human rights movements." —Amy Ziering Kofman et Kirby Dick, makes of a new film, "Derrida."

Says Derrida himself: "Under the heading of' declaring oneself Jewish,' I would rather confide in you, and perhaps avow that these philosophical necessities have imposed themselves upon me through the modest experience of someone who, prior to becoming what you call a 'French-speaking Jewish intellectual.' was first a young Jew in French Algeria...In a country where the number and the diversity of historical communities was as rich as in Jerusalem, West to East, this Jewish child could only dream of a peaceful, cultural, linguistic, and even national pluri-belonging through the experience of non-belonging: separations, rejections, ruptures, exclusions...

Covell Commons, UCLA. 2:30 pm, Kenneth Reinhard, Dir. UCLA Center for Jewish Studies, introductory remarks. 2:45 Jacques Derrida, Dir. of Studies at the Ecole des Hautes Etudes en Sciences Sociales (Paris) and Prof. of Comp Lit at UCI. 3:15 Responses to Derrida's "Abraham, the Other" and "Avowing—The Impossible" by Gil Anidjar (Columbia U.), Robert Gibbs (U. of Toronto), Dana Hollander (Michigan State), Moshe Idel (Hebrew U.), Joshua Kates (St. Johns), Eric Santner (U. of Chicago), Elizabeth Weber (UCSB) and Samuel Weber (Northwestern), and comments by Prof. Derrida. 5:45 Reception. 6:30-7:30, Screening of Derrida's "Elsewhere," a film by Safaa Faty (1999, 52 minutes). Free to the public. Call for info, 310-825-5387.

[L.A..] Sunday, April 28, 7:30 pm Sephardic Songs of Exile, A Symphonic Suite Composed by Yuval Ron and Performed by the L.A. Jewish Symphony

A world premier of Yuval Ron's "Sephardic Songs of Exile," a symphonic suite based on the traditional music of the Jews of Bosnia, Spain and Morocco. Performed by the Los Angeles Jewish Symphony featuring soloists: Maya Hadi - alto voice, Jamie Papish - percussion, Yuval Ron - oud. Commissioned by artistic director Dr. Noreen Green for the LAJS. Also in the program: contemporary symphonic compositions by Noam Sheriff, Benjamin Yusupov, Moshe Rasiuk and Ariel Davydov. Reception with the composers and performers to follow the concert. Location: Sinai Temple Hall - 10400 Wilshire Blvd., Los Angeles, CA Tickets: To order tickets please call LAJS Box Office at: 310-478-9311.

[N.Y.] Sunday, April 28, 7:00 pm Emil Zrihan, Extraordinary Judeo-Moroccan Vocalist/Cantor/Hazzan Performs at Symphony Space

The World Music Institute presents Emil Zrihan, the extraordinary countertenor & cantor from Ashkelon. Zrihan makes a rare appearance with his compelling Judeo-Andalusian musical ensemble performing Arab/Mizrahi music of Moroccan and the Middle East. He was a huge hit during his last New York appearance in Central Park in 2000 and roused audiences to their feet in Los Angeles and San Francisco during his U.S. debut in 1999. At Symphony Space, Broadway at 95th Street, NYC $30; students $15, Box office, (212) 864-5400. Information/charges (212) 545-7536.

" Šamazing vocal improvisationsŠ" CHICAGO TRIBUNE "Š(he) amazed American listeners with his Neptunian breath control and ecstatic blend of Moroccan mawal, flamenco, and Jewish and Muslim liturgical music." RHYTHM MAGAZINE The Moroccan-born Israeli cantor Emil Zrihan, nicknamed "the voice of the mockingbird," has been acknowledged as one of the finest countertenors in the world. The power and range of his voice expresses the emotional intensity of North African sacred and secular songs (both Sephardic and Arabic), and the vivacity of Andalusian mawal, a virtuosic improvisational form performed by Arabs throughout North Africa and the Levant. Through his performances he encourages peaceful dialogue between Jews and Arabs. Singing in Arabic and Hebrew, he will be accompanied by the brilliant Œud (lute) player Nabil Khalidi, violinist Mohammed Bennis, accordionist Sameh Sidhom, and percussionists Omar Rhattani and Mustapha Ettamri.

This program is made possible in part with public support from the New York State Council on the Arts, a State agency. Additional funding is provided by the Howard Bayne Fund and the Concordia Foundation. Endorsed by Ivri-NASAWI.

[N.Y.] Wed., May 1, States of the Art: Arab, Hebrew & Spanish Novelists Elias Khoury, Shimon Ballas & Juan Goytisolo read from their work.

New York University Main Bldg., Room 703, 100 Washington Square East. Introduced by Ammiel Alcalay.
Free admission. Elias Khoury is visiting Professor at New York University; his novels include Bab al-Shams, Little Mountain, Journey of Little Ghandi, and Gates of the City. Juan Goytisolo, visiting at the King Juan Carlos Center, is the author of many novels and essay collections. His most recent books include The Marx Family Saga, Landscapes of War and the forthcoming State of Siege. Shimon Ballas has written twelve novels in Hebrew and several collections of critical essays in Arabic; translations of his work into English appear in Ammiel Alcalay¹s collection, Keys to the Garden. Ammiel Alcalay¹s most recent books are Memories of Our Future: Selected essays 1982-1999, and From the Warring Factions.

Sponsored/funded and/or endorsed by: The Ford Foundation / Crossing Borders: Rethinking Area Studies Program Classical, Middle Eastern & Asian Languages & Cultures / Queens College Center for Comparative Literature & Society / Columbia University The Hagop Kevorkian Center / New York University Comparative Literature / CUNY Graduate Center Middle Eastern Studies / New York University Comparative Literature / Columbia University The Oded Halahmy Foundation for the Arts The Community Bookstore / Brooklyn/Ivri-NASAWI/Levantine Cultural Center. For further info call 718-997-5586 or 212-998-8877.

[N.Y.] Wed., May 1, 9: 30 pm, Sarah Aroeste, Spanish Mediterranean Rock Fusion, with Yoel Ben-Simhon and Guests

Sarah Aroeste is best known for her funky fusion of Spanish, Mediterranean and American musical styles. Yoel Ben-Simhon is best-known for his Moroccan/Middle East musical performances with his Sultana Ensemble. Here Ben-Simhon joins Aroeste for a new collaboration.

Inspired by her family's cultural heritage—orginally from Spain and later settling in Salonika, Greece— the Aroeste sound combines and updates aspects from her unique family background. Most influenced by the music and language of her Spanish roots, Aroeste grounds her music in Ladino, or castillian Spanish, the language originated by Spanish Jews after their expulsion from Spain in 1492. This medieval form of Spanish was carried by Spanish Jews to the various points where they later settled, primarily along the Mediterranean coast and North Africa. In time, ladino came to absorb bits and pieces of languages all along the Mediterranean coast, including Greek, Turkish, Portuguese, French, Italian and Hebrew.

Wednesday, May 1st, Makor, 9:30 PM, $12, 35 W. 67th Street, NYC. 212-601-1000.

[N.Y.] Thurs., May 2, A Fistful of Lentils: Jennifer Felicia Abadi Discusses her New Syrian Cookbook/Memoir at Makor, 7 pm.

"A Fistful of Lentils," writes Steven Raichlin, "is a fine work of culinary archaeology, but even more, it's a vibrant, living cookbook..." Says food critic Gil Marks, this "is a comprehensive and thoughtful collection of traditional Syrian-Jewish dishes." Jennifer Abadi will be on to prepare two recipes from her book, Bazirgan ( a crushed wheat "caviar" salad) and a warmed creamed lemon-spinach salad— both served with pita bread. During the demo she will give a brief history about the Syrian Jews, anddiscuss the Arabic and Spanish influences on their cuisine. She will also talk about the Syrian Jewish community of Brooklyn and Manhattan of today. Makor, 7 pm., 35 W. 67th Street, New York 10017. Call 212-601-1000 for info.

[S.F.] Thurs., May 2, An Evening With Turkish Poet Murat Nemet-Nejat, 7:30 pm

A Turkish-born poet of Persian Jewish descent, Murat Nemet-Nejat has been engaged in translating major Turkish poetry into English, and creating his own multi-leveled poetry, for many years. He reads at 7:30 pm, $7.00 Donation, @The Unitarian Center, 1187 Franklin (At Geary). For more information visit the San Francisco Poetry Center's website. To read some of Nemet-Nejat's work, visit the Ismi Anthology.


*Ivri-NASAWI listsSephardi/Mizrahi and Middle Eastern-related events produced by other organizations. Please be sure to call in your programs with 30 days advance notice whenever possible. To inquire about our affordable web rates for featured listings, call 323.650.3157.
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