26 May 2007

British comic's Jewish identity

The British TV hit, Who Do You Think You Are, which entices celebrities to explore their roots, began airing two months ago in Israel. After reading about the show since its inception, it was good to finally view the series. Among the personalities featured was Jewish comedian David Baddiel.

Baddiel spoke at a big genealogy fair in London a few weeks ago, and he mentioned how valuable tracing his roots had been to him.

"In his programme, Baddiel discovered that his Great Uncle may have died in the Warsaw Ghetto and locates the remains of his German grandfather’s brick factory taken by the Nazis. He also attempts to make contact with the ultra-orthodox side of his family.

Baddiel said: “I don’t really have a religious bone in my body but culturally I feel very linked to Judaism.

“The experience was really valuable in terms of finding out what has happened to Jews in the last century. My whole story was about what it means to be Jewish and surviving, It was really valuable to me.”

Click here for more.

The story, at TotallyJewish.com, also referenced the JGSUK's new database on mid-19th century Britain, culminating 10 years of research and documenting Anglo-Jews in the 1851 census.

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