Wednesday, November 17, 2021 | 4:00PM (AZ Time)
Prof. Miriam Udel, Ph.D.
Honey On and Off the Page: An Interview with Miriam Udel on Yiddish Popular Literature
Zoom Registration Link: https://arizona.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_9vaaY48lTviKtx8K4Pk2zQ
In this interview, Prof. Udel will discuss her research on Yiddish popular literature, especially children's literature, and its role in the critical study of how Ashkenazic Jews shaped and responded to Jewish modernity.
Almost a year ago, Prof. Udel released Honey on the Page: A Treasury of Yiddish Children’s Literature, a collection of almost fifty primary sources. Among other things, Prof. Udel will address her choices about what to include in and exclude from the book, and the challenges of translating children’s literature across generations. By focusing on the content and structure of the anthology, Prof. Udel will meditate on three related phenomena: the political thrust of Yiddish children’s literature as a project of Ashkenazi cultural nationalism; the diffusion Child Psychology in modern Jewish life; and the rise of "workers' literature" in the US and USSR.
Miriam Udel is Associate Professor of German Studies and Jewish Studies at Emory University, where her teaching focuses on Yiddish language, literature, and culture. She holds an AB in Near Eastern Languages and Civilizations and a PhD in Comparative Literature, both from Harvard University. She was ordained in 2019 as part of the first cohort of the Executive Ordination Track at Yeshivat Maharat, a program designed to bring qualified midcareer women into the Orthodox rabbinate. Udel’s academic research interests include 20th-century Yiddish literature and culture, Jewish children’s literature, and American-Jewish literature. She is the author of Never Better!: The Modern Jewish Picaresque (University of Michigan Press), winner of the 2017 National Jewish Book Award in Modern Jewish Thought and Experience. She is the editor and translator of Honey on the Page: A Treasury of Yiddish Children’s Literature (NYU Press, 2020), winner of the Reference Award of the Association of Jewish Libraries. The 2021 puppet film Labzik: Tales of a Clever Pup, released by Theater Emory, was based on her translation. Awarded an NEH Public Scholar grant this year, she is currently working on a critical study of Yiddish children’s literature.