Ladino (Judeo-Spanish) emerged as the language of Sephardi Jews who left the Iberian peninsula for the Ottoman Empire. This talk will explore the rise of this language, the emergence of a Ladino religious print culture, the turn to vernacular literature in the 18th century, the world of newspapers and novels in the 19th century, and the decline of the language in the 20th century.
Aron Rodrigue is the Charles Michael Professor in Jewish History and Culture at Stanford University. Prof. Rodrigue specializes in the history and culture of Sephardi Jewries. His latest publication is the co-edited book A Jewish Voice from Ottoman Salonica: The Ladino Memoir of Sa’adi Besalel a-Levi (edited and with an Introduction with Sarah Abrevaya Stein, Translation, Transliteration, and Glossary by Isaac Jerusalmi) (2012). His books include Jews and Muslims: Images of Sephardi and Eastern Jewries in Transition, 1860-1939 (2003), Sephardi Jewry: A History of the Judeo-Spanish Community, 14th-20thCenturies, (2000, co-authored with Esther Benbassa), and French Jews, Turkish Jews: The Alliance Israélite Universelle and the Politics of Jewish Schooling in Turkey, 1860-1925 (1990). He is a fellow of the American Academy of Jewish Research. He is the recipient of the Alberto Benveniste Prize (Paris) for Research in Sephardic Studies, 2011, and of the National Jewish Book Council Honor Award in Sephardic Studies, 1994. He served as member of the Academic Advisory Board of the Center for Advanced Holocaust Studies at the US Holocaust Memoiral Museum between 2004 and 2012. He has been named Chevalier de l’Ordre des Arts et Lettres by the French Ministry of Culture in 2013.