Eser 2014-2015: Top 10 Jewish Cultural Creations

eser young adult learning series

This winter's Eser theme, Top 10 Jewish Cultural Creations, will explore the fascinating evolutions and revolutions of different cultural expressions in Judaism, and how those expressions inform Jewish identity and practice today.

Each Eser topic will function as a gateway for discussion on how we individually and collectively experience and relate to Jewish culture, and are designed to generate the kind of thought-provoking and stimulating conversations that have come to define the Eser experience.    

The 10 Eser topics, chosen by a group of Eser alumni, will be discussed in living rooms throughout Greater Boston beginning in February. Groups will be led by dynamic young rabbis and Jewish educators from the area.

Below are a few of the topics that will be discussed.


Jewish Music from Mendelssohn to Matisyahu

What makes music Jewish? What is Jewish about a wordless melody, a clarinet at a wedding or a guitar in a synagogue? How did Klezmer (traditional European Jewish music) evolve from a low-status pursuit to an honored form of music? We'll explore questions like these as we learn about the role of music in shaping Jewish tradition and practice.


Jewish Language: Born to Kvetch

Do we carry or schlep? Complain or kvetch? In this session we'll take a look at the role that language has played in helping Jewish communities create their cultural identities, and explore how we identify Jewishly and culturally with the words and phrases we choose to use.


Food: Matzah Matters

Food is imbued with meaning in Jewish tradition and has become a foundation of Jewish culture. Why do so many people relate Jewishly through food? What is Jewish about Jewish food? We'll answer questions like these as we embark on a Jewish food journey across cultures and time.