JHSFC Book Talks

"Books and talk are a splendid combination,” says Barbara Rosett, long time organizer of our lecture series. "Put them together with the people of the book and you have the JHSFC long running Book Talks program.”

Monthly from September to May, usually on a Wednesday morning, JHSFC members and guests come together to hear and talk about a book with Judaic interest, presented by a volunteer reviewer from the community. Whether led by a professor, author, rabbi or community leader, the group gathers to learn about the book, author and theme with a Judaic content. All titles presented are available for borrowing from The Harry Rosenbaum JHS Judaica Library and the Ferguson Library, as well as neighboring libraries.

These programs, all meeting on Wednesday Mornings at 10:00 AM at The Harry Rosenbaum JHS Judaica Library, Stamford JCC unless otherwise noted, are open to the public without charge. Light refreshments are served.

Questions about the programs? Contact Marcie Schoenfeld at 203-359-9148 or email elissa@de-kaplan.com


Stay tuned for the current schedule of Virtual Book Talks for 2021
. . . in the meantime, please enjoy some of our past Book Talks . . .




The Book of V

Wednesday, February 17, 2021
12:00 pm
by Anna Solomon
Presented by Rhonda Ginsberg






Virtual Book Talks


2021







Florence Adler Swims Forever

Wednesday, March 17, 2021
12:00 pm
by Rachel Beanland
Presented by Dr. Judith Katz






The Crate

Tuesday, June 23, 2020
7:00 pm
with author Deborah Vadas Levison






America's Jewish Women:
A History from Colonial Times to Today


Tuesday, August 25, 2020
5:00 pm
with noted historian Pamela S. Nadell




Israeli Poetry

Wednesday, September 16, 2020
10:00 am
presented by RJ Schwartz
and
Yael Stolarsky




Naamah

Wednesday, October 21, 2020
7:00 pm
Presented by Elissa Kaplan






The Orphan's Tale
and
Hidden Recipes

Wednesday, November 18, 2020
7:00 pm
Presented by Christine Bonarrigo






The Menorah:
From the Bible to Modern Israel


Wednesday, December 9, 2020
7:00 pm
Presented by Johathan Fass





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September 18, 2019

THE TALMUD:
a Biography

by Barry Scott Wimpfheimer
Presenter: Jonathan Fass

What is the Talmud and why should I care?


October 16, 2019

THE NOTORIOUS BEN HECHT

by Julien Gorbach
Presenter: Marilyn Schwartz

The biography of the 20th century writer (The Front Page), whose activism during the 1940s was the central drama of his life.


November 20, 2019

BENEATH A SCARLET SKY

by Mark T. Sullivan
Presenter: Christine Bonarrigo

The true story of a forgotten hero from Italy to Germany, from reckless teen to Allied spy. A thriller love story.


December 18, 2019

THE LAST WATCHMAN
OF OLD CAIRO

by Michael David Lucas
Presenter: Bob Abrams

Journeying from Berkeley to Cairo, a man uncovers the tangled history that binds the Muslim and Jewish sides of his family..


January 22, 2020

THE SISTERS OF
THE WINTER WOOD

by Rena Rossner
Presenter: Rhonda Ginsberg

Two Jewish teens in the Ukraine find out that one is a bear and the other is a swan. More dangers lurk in the wood!


February 19, 2020

THE LIBRARY BOOK

by Susan Orlean
Presenters: Joan Kranz
and Ann Rosenbaum

A mesmerizing book that manages to tell the broader story of libraries and librarians in a way that has never been done before.


March 18, 2020

ISRAELI POETRY (1923-2014)

Presenter: Richard Schwartz and Guest

Israeli poetry - in books, in songs, and on the streets.


April 22, 2020

ONE NIGHT MARKOVITCH

by Ayelet Gunder
Presenter: Judy Katz

Marriages of convenience were arranged to smuggle Jewish women out of Nazi-occupied Europe as Israel is about to become a state.


May 20, 2020

MENSCH MARKS

by Rabbi Joshua Hammerman
Presenter: Rabbi Joshua Hammerman

The author's personal Torah scroll - the life lessons he has learned along his winding, circuitous journey.



Book Talks from October 2018- May 2019



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October 24, 2018

THE WEIGHT OF INK

by Rachel Kadish
Presenter: Marilyn Schwartz

National Jewish Book Award winner of a story set in London in the 1600s and early 21st century. It revolves around two women — the choices and sacrifices they make.


November 28, 2018

JEWBOY OF THE SOUTH

by Don Koplen
Presenter: Dr. Elissa Kaplan

The book is a saga about a small-town southern Jewish boy and the characters who helped him grow up, learn about sex versus love, black and white, true religion, soul music and jazz.


December 19, 2018

MUSICALLY SPEAKING:
A LIFE THROUGH SONG

by Ruth Westheimer
Presenters: Dr. Judith Katz
and Cantor Micah Morgovsky

Dr. Ruth has written a warm and contemplative book about the role music has played in her life and the ineradicable traces it has left on her thoughts, emotions, her very being.




January 16, 2019

LETTERS TO MY PALESTINIAN NEIGHBOR

by Yossi Klein Halevi
Presenter: Rabbi Joshua Hammerman

The author empathizes with Palestinian suffering and longing for reconciliation as he explores how the conflict looks through Israeli eyes.


February 27, 2019

ROOM ON RUE AMELIE

by Kristin Harmel
Presenter: Bob Abrams

The novel is about an American woman, a British RAF pilot, and a young Jewish teenager whose lives intersect in World War II occupied Paris


March 27, 2019

ISRAELI POETRY AND SONGS

Theme: Rebellion and Redemption
Presenters: Richard Schwartz
and Noa Bober, JCC Israeli Shlicha

Israeli poetry can be found in books, in songs, and on the streets. This conversation will take a surprisingly fresh look at Israeli poetry around themes of rebellion and resistance.




April 17, 2019

NEW YORK'S YIDDISH THEATER:
FROM THE BOWERY TO BROADWAY

by Edna Nahshon
Presenter: Penny Wolff

This book details how the Yiddish theater with its artistic innovations, energetic style, and engagement with politics and the world around them came to influence all facets of the American stage.


May 15, 2019

MIRACLE AT MIDLIFE

by Roni Beth Tower
Presenter: Roni Beth Tower

The author's memoir about her intense and transformative transatlantic courtship. Never too old for love!




Book Talks from October 2017- June 2018



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October 18, 2017

THE EXTRA

by A. B. Yehoshua
Presenter: Marilyn Schwartz

A musician returns home and finds the rhythm of her life interrupted and forever changed.


November 15, 2017

ORCHESTRA OF EXILES

by Denise George and
Josh Aronson
Presenter: Penny Wolff

The compelling biography of the violinist, Bronislaw Huberman, who founded the Palestine Symphony Orchestra and saved hundreds of people from Hitler.


December 13, 2017

ISRAELI POETRY AND SONGS

Theme: Freedom
Presenters: Richard Schwartz
and Yael Stolarsky, JCC Israeli Shlicha

Israeli poetry can be found in books, in songs, and on the streets. This conversation will take a new look at Israeli poetry.




January 24, 2018

A HORSE WALKS INTO A BAR

by David Grossman
Presenter: Bob Abrams

A serious writer embraces the world of comedy with this parable-like tale of a repellent Israeli comedian.


February 21, 2018

MEGILLAT ESTHER
A Graphic Novel

by J. T. Waldman
Presenter: Dr. Elissa Kaplan

In what may be the world's first religious, scholarly comic book, Waldman tells the epic tale of exile and redemption in graphic form.


April 18, 2018

WAKING LIONS

by Ayelet Gundar-Goshen
Presenter: Joan Kranz

A hit-and-run accident and a blackmailing widow spark a triangle of moral dilemmas in the highly anticipated second book from the Israeli novelist.




May 16, 2018

NEMESIS

by Philip Roth
Presenter: Sondra Melzer

Reflections on Major Works of Philip Roth. Ending with His Final Masterpiece "Nemesis" his Farewell to Writing.


June 6, 2018

RUTH BADER GINSBURG
Supreme Court Justice

by Cathleen Small
Presenter: Dr. Judith Katz

Learn more about Ginsburg's early life, view of gender equality, the Bush v Gore ruling and her historic rulings on the Supreme Court.




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Book Talks are underwritten by
Marcie Schoenfeld in honor of her Beloved Parents, Rose and Abraham Schoenfeld
Eileen Bolinsky and Susan Trotz in Memory of their Beloved Parents, Eleanor and Nathan Bolinsky

The usual location for the JHSFC Book Talks is the Stamford JCC located at 1035 Newfield Avenue, but other local venues have been used.

Details for each talk are also made available through The New Jewish Voice and flyers at the JCC, along with mailers to JHSFC members.

Programs are FREE and open to the public. Refreshments are served.


Please contact the historical society staff for additional information.

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