The Yiddish Revival

If there is going to be a revival, in the true sense, it is going to depend on young artists who can speak, read and write Yiddish. People like Eli Rosen, Malky Goldman, Luzer Twersky, Melissa Weiss, Moshe Lobel, Dovid Lew, Bunia, Gera Sandler, Mira Kessler, and others, from both the Hasidic and Yiddishist communities. All of these folks are involved with NYR, all of them participate in our workshops, most of them have appeared in our productions.

It is important to differentiate between an academic revival, and a revival such as the emergence of Hebrew from the province of academic study to the tongues of millions of “new” Jews.

Outside of the Chasidic community there are only transient communities; week long events like Yiddish vokh or Yiddishland, summer courses, festivals and seminars, or small communities with a transient population: Yiddish Farm, and Yiddish hoyz being the only ones I am aware of.

It would be interesting to know how many people who have taken part in the various Yiddish courses around the globe have actually gone on to become fluent. Without the ability to use what they learned on a regular basis it would be understandable if most of them view it as a nostalgic memory.


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