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Jewish Languages: Commonality and Diversity

April 1, 2024 6:00 p.m. - 7:00 p.m. ET

From Yiddish and Ladino to Bukharian and Judeo-Greek, Jews around the world have spoken distinctly from their non-Jewish neighbors. In this engaging talk, Dr. Sarah Bunin Benor will explore the linguistic diversity of the Jewish people with an emphasis on shared traits. While speaking varieties of their local language, Jews have incorporated elements of Hebrew and Aramaic, influences from other ancestral languages, archaisms, and innovations. Through texts and music videos, Dr. Benor will explain how Jews have simultaneously been a part of and apart from their surrounding society. 


Sarah Benor

Sarah Bunin Benor is Vice Provost and Professor of Contemporary Jewish Studies at Hebrew Union College – Jewish Institute of Religion (Los Angeles campus) and Adjunct Professor in the University of Southern California Linguistics Department. She received her Ph.D. from Stanford University in Linguistics in 2004. Dr. Benor co-edits the Journal of Jewish Languages (Brill) and directs the HUC-JIR Jewish Language Project, which features the Jewish Language Website and the Jewish English Lexicon.