Yiddishist and historian Vivi Lachs presents her newest book, London Yiddishtown! In this talk, Vivi will introduce you to the ups and downs, the humour and the tensions of Jewish life in London’s East End of the 1930s and 40s through three of its local Yiddish writers. Vivi will talk about the East End and read excerpts of her translations of their stories: Katie Brown’s hilarious sketches about generational conflict, Summer Lisky’s gripping stories of combating fascism in London, and Arnold Kaizer’s comic satire of community and synagogue antics. These stories are told with humour, intensity, and passion. This talk will be in English; no Yiddish, London, or any other knowledge necessary.
Vivi Lachs is a historian of the Jewish East End, a Yiddishist, a performer and a researcher at Queen Mary University. Her books on the subject are Whitechapel Noise: Jewish Immigrant Life in Yiddish Song and Verse, London 1884-1914 and her latest book London Yiddishtown: East End Jewish Life in Yiddish Sketch and Story, 1930-1950 is partly a result of a 2019 Yiddish Book Center translation fellowship. Vivi is a popular speaker and performer and sings with the bands Klezmer Klub (Whitechapel, mayn Vaytshepl) and Katsha’nes (Don’t Ask Silly Questions). She runs the Great Yiddish Parade bringing Yiddish songs of protest and union activism of the 1890s back onto the streets of London and leads tours in the local area.
Copies of London Yiddishtown will be available for purchase and signing.
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