02 September 2010

Hong Kong: Asian Jewish Life's new issue

The summer 2010 edition of Asian Jewish Life has hit cyberspace to provide the rest of us with a look at contemporary Jewish diaspora life throughout Asia

When I visited Hong Kong (February/March 2010), I met Erica Lyons - an expat American who lives in Hong Kong with her family. As editor-in-chief of the magazine, she's produced another excellent collection of fascinating articles covering numerous countries.

Check out the new issue online and see these stories:

Animating Jewish-Chinese Relations: Judaism and Israel are hot topics in China. More than 10 Chinese universities offer Judaic studies programs, including at least one doctoral program. China’s state-owned television network, CCTV, recently aired a documentary titled “Walk into Israel - Land of Milk and Honey,” its first series on Israel. The story of the Shanghai Jews is now a popular topic as well.

The Way Home: Born in Seoul, filmmaker Jason Hoffman was adopted by a New York Jewish family. The film, "Going Home," is his story of finding his roots, his birthmother and sister.

Finding a Lost Tribe of Israel in India: The long road home.

The Endless Jewish Audience: Whenever he walks into a new social situation - synagogue, Shabbat dinner or a Judaica store - there's always the chance this Japanese Jewish convert will need to tell his conversion story to a confused, sometimes judgmental, audience.

The Color of Carefully Ordered Chaos: Israeli artist Nir Segal's work on exhibit in Thailand.

Living Tikkun Olam in Nepal: Israeli backpackers and diaspora Jews volunteer in Tevel b’Tzedek (The Earth in Justice), founded by Micha Odenheimer. The group runs intensive four-month Nepal experience (February), as well as five-week programs beginning in October, November and December. Read the story to learn what this organization has accomplished and its plans for the future.

In Book Reviews, two interesting family histories and a family secret (Shanghai and Zimbabwe). Although not new, each provides insights on a destination: Shanghai Shadows (Lois Ruby, Holiday House, 2006) and When a Crocodile Eats the Sun (Peter Godwin, Little, Brown and Company, 2006).

See the table of contents here for more. There are stories by a writer in Cambodia, a social activist in Japan, Asian kosher food, an ex-pat diary story, a travel feature by the New Jersey-born conductor of the The Hong Kong Bach Choir and Orchestra, and more.

AJL is a free quarterly publication designed to share regional Jewish thoughts, ideas and culture and promote unity, while celebrating individuality, diverse backgrounds and customs.

Thank you, Erica, for another good read!

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