Letter and Spirit: New Jewish Culture and the Archaic Revival

at Lehigh University

Bethlehem, PA

Among younger educated Jews, there is a renaissance underway of new Jewish culture, spirituality, and identity. Generally disregarding of conventional movements, ideologies, and labels, young Jews are congregating on their own for prayer, spiritual practice, and cultural Activities. In parallel, leading young Jewish writers like Jonathan Safran Foer, Michael Chabon, Nathan Englander, and Myla Goldberg are increasingly making use of religious themes in their work, in sharp contrast to a previous generation of secular Jewish writers. What do these new spiritual and literary movements mean for the Jewish future? Are there new forms of Jewishness being written and created today? In addition to the lecture, Jay will give a poetry reading and Q&A and the Lehigh Humanities Center, at 12pm.