Dara Horn, author of the book, People Love Dead Jews, joined us in Nashville for an energetic, incredibly engaging, and highly researched program in which she shared her vast experience reviewing Holocaust education and how it impacts current issues of antisemitism. Her thought-provoking perspective opened the door to a new way of looking at antisemitism. She shattered some myths and pushed us to think differently. One change in perspective she encourages is to move from trying to make Judaism “normal” and to instead be proud of how we bring a different perspective, using the tag line, “Fighting conformity for over 3000 years.”
She encouraged us to be proud of our remarkable culture and heritage, and to learn more and celebrate the beauty and values of our tradition. As an example, she shared the historic context of Shabbat as an early form of social justice. Shabbat allows, actually it commands, rest not only for the wealthy, but for everyone, including beasts of burden. Shabbat offers an opportunity for physical rest each week to provide time and space for us to focus on our spiritual health and well-being. In ancient Rome, the observance of Shabbat lead to antisemitic tropes that Jews are lazy – how else can working class people have a day of rest? Only the wealthy should have the option for leisure. The essential quality of Shabbat to us as a people is something to be shared and celebrated, regardless of our individual levels of observance. The gift of Shabbat to the world is something that can be a tremendous source of pride.
Horn sees moving the conversation of how to address antisemitism away from fear and toward pride and closer connection with the values and meaning inherent in Jewish life and culture. We will continue to explore, discuss, and embrace some of the wisdom Horn shared with us as we plan for the coming year. Her perspective will inform our outlook as we move from fear to pride. Together we will create meaningful opportunities to be both Proudly Jewish and Jewish Proudly.
June 7: At this year’s annual meeting, we will thank the outgoing Jewish Federation of Greater Nashville board and welcome new members and leaders. I would like to express my huge gratitude to our outgoing JCRC Chair, Steven Remer. Steven is an earnest, thoughtful, and dedicated community leader, and we have been well served by his steady and balanced perspective. Kol HaKavod to Steven and all our outgoing leaders. May we all go from strength to strength.
June 21: Ethiopian Israeli Singer, Aveva, in concert at the Analog inside Hutton Hotel
This will be the final in our three-part series celebrating Israel at 75
Aveva Dese, is an Ethiopian-Israeli singer-songwriter who fuses traditional Ethiopian sounds & grooves with her soul-pop melodies, producing a unique style with universal appeal
As a first-generation immigrant from Ethiopia, AvevA brings a fascinating life story into her music. She sings about society, freedom, and love, creating an inspiring and empowering experience. Her songs, many in English, have universal appeal. Aveva's 2nd album - “In My Thoughts”, was released in March 2019 and has received great reviews in the Israeli music scene. AvevA brings her own unique cultural flare to the table with her own style: a mix of powerful texts (in both English and Amharic) and traditional Ethiopian sounds.
Originally discovered on the Israeli version of The Voice, Aveva has displayed her universal appeal on tours with Idan Raichel and with her original music at festival across Israel, Europe and North America.
Tickets are on sale now with two options:
VIP Tickets: $50/ticket includes a full Mediterranean style dinner and VIP seating.
Concert only Tickets: $15 open seating AvEvA Concert | Jewish Federation of Greater Nashville (jewishnashville.org)