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Author: Naomi Danis

My Post-Holocaust American Halloween

My mom was a European-born Holocaust survivor, and trick-or-treating was out of the question for her children when my sisters and I were growing up in the late 1950s and early 60s.

A Rant Before Mother’s Day

Let’s make sure that in all the anticipatory hoopla connected to Mother’s Day (and Father’s Day) we don’t raise another generation of children with antiquated, ignorant and unintentionally hurtful notions about the truly diverse nature of human families.

History on Trial: The Docudrama

This film, in which Rachel Weisz stars, is based on Lipstadt’s 2005 book History on Trial: My Day in Court with a Holocaust Denier (2005). Its screenplay, written by David Hare, may be indicative of a new 21st-century era of Holocaust film tackling a fundamental question we haven’t needed to ask in quite this way until now: How do we know what we know? 

Feminists in Focus: In Darkness on the Shortlist

In Darkness, a film by Polish director Agnieszka Holland (Europa, Europa), is based on the true story of Leopold Socha (Robert Wieckiewicz), a Catholic sewer worker and petty thief who, though not especially fond of Jews, is willing to court danger in 1943 Nazi-occupied Lvov in order to make some easy cash, and hides a group of Jews underground for over a year.

Feminists in Focus: Dolphin Boy

I am an Israeli film junkie. Even though I visit my beloved other country often, I also depend on and delight in getting extra fixes of Israel vicariously through its films. When Meir Fenigstein’s Israel film festival comes to New York, for 25 years already, I am there. Each year, no matter how late the… Read more »

Waiting for Gilad

I took my laptop to bed last night tuned to Ynet to wait and watch with the people of Israel for the release of Gilad Shalit, and it seemed to take forever. The logistics were complicated, the politics complex–I was reminded of Blu Greenberg’s comment that when there is a rabbinic will there is a… Read more »

Sometimes We Say Hello

Cross-posted with United Synagogue of Conservative Judaism. The diplomat uses as many words as possible and tries to say nothing; the picture book writer uses as few words as possible and tries to say everything, according to Uri Shulevitz, famed children’s author and illustrator. Perhaps Shulevitz was following in the footsteps of Rabbi Akiva, who… Read more »