Sarah Benor

Hebrew Union College

Sarah Benor is an Associate Professor at Hebrew Union College in Los Angeles who received her PhD from Stanford University in Linguistics. She researches and teaches about American Jewish language and culture, and her book, Becoming Frum: How Newcomers Learn the Language and Culture of Orthodox Judaism, is forthcoming with Rutgers University Press.

Mensch/Bentsh/Balagan: Jewish Language + Identity

This interactive talk describes the range of Jewish American English -- from the addition of a few Yiddish words among Jews with weak connections with organized Jewish life to the "Yeshivish" of strictly Orthodox Jews, which is filled with words and grammatical influences from Yiddish, Hebrew, and Aramaic. Jews use subtle variation in language to signal their textual knowledge, religious denomination, generation from immigration, and other aspects of their Jewish identities.

Peering Into the Jewish Future

Joshua Avedon, Sarah Benor, David Cygielman

If the 20th century was all about proving Jews are just like everyone else, the challenge for the 21st is how to make Jewish life relevant and compelling. But the communal institutions of Jewish life were mostly constructed for the old paradigm. So what are the trends, shifts in identity, and emerging ideas that are feeding the changes? And how can the Jewish community adapt, and ultimately thrive, in the new environment? Join us for a facilitated discussion to figure it all out.