Loss Of Community In Waiting For A Jew By Jonathan Boyarin

881 Words4 Pages
In “Waiting for a Jew” Jonathan Boyarin shows the interior journey he goes through in order to find his identity and purpose in the community where he lives. This essay describes the changes Boyarin has undergone both as an individual and as a member of a marginalized society. Already in the first lines of “ Waiting for a Jew” he claims that his mission is to find his Jewish identity, "My story begins in a community, with an illusion of wholeness”. The essay starts talking about Boyarin's life in Farmingdale, where he lives in a community with blacks, whites and Jews. Even though it is a marginal community, he likes it because it is very easy to develop a transcultural identity there. As a matter of fact, he blends with this multicultural…show more content…
When Boyarin is around ten, they move to an almost exclusively white, middle-class suburb where he feels really uncomfortable, and alone; he finds no sense of togetherness here. This loss of community has negative effects on him, also because he encounters discrimination from his neighborhood. In the meantime, his family's tradition and religion guide him throughout his journey, and he feels continuously nostalgic of his hometown as well as his childhood. Later on, after his first year in graduate school, he moves to Paris where he experiences other negative aspects linked to the difference of ethnicity. Thus, he describes that while he is on a taxi, the driver suggests him and his fiancé to hide the fact they are Jewish, because of the recent terrorist attack in Paris. While abroad he steps outside of his Jewish culture. However, it is only temporarily because at the end of his essay Boyarin realizes that he wants to become part of it again. He comes back to New York, and joins the community of the Eighth Street Shul. Boyarin deeply believes that being part of a community plays a great role in a person's…show more content…
It tells the story of this woman at the time when she started teaching at the University of Teheran. It offers a fascinating portrait as well as a deep exploration of the Islamic revolution in Iran while showing how it affected a university professor and her students. In “ Reading Lolita in Teheran” Nafisi is looking for a way to escape reality and find out if art can be more powerful than a dictatorship. Because of her deep passion for literature and reading, Nafisi chooses to teach a sampling of world’s greatest literature to seven of her most committed female students. Thus, every Thursday morning they gather in order to read and discuss freely about the Western classics forbidden by the Iranian regime. “Sitting around the large coffee table covered with bouquets of flowers, we moved in and out of the novels we read”, this is how Nafisi explains the atmosphere during her classes. These women risk in the face of tyranny while immersing themselves in the world of literature. Nafisi also states that the she has not chosen them according to their cultural background, but due to their personality. Indeed, the women in this group meet to preserve their individuality in a world that punishes it. The women in Nafisi’s living room speak not only about the books they read but also about themselves, their dreams and disappointments. As a matter of fact, while the world where they live is oppressive, the world

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