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    "The Blue Turbaned Muslims": The Jews of Kaifeng, China

    Community Tuesdays

    When: Tuesday, 1/7/2020 1:00 PM - 2:30 PM

    Where: Albert and Janet Schultz Cultural Arts Hall (Bldg F)

    OFJCC Palo Alto JCC

    Contrary to the experience of Jews the world over, the Jews of China were never victimized as Jews by institutional racism or systematic religious intolerance. As a civilized people whose religious tenets were in harmony with the Confucianist Five Relationships, the Jews were welcome on China's shores. For many centuries, the tiny Jewish colonies of China were able to maintain their separate existence and withstand the power of absorption and assimilation.

    In this multi-media presentation, we will touch upon the following topics:

    • Origin theories of the Chinese Jews: Did they come overland or via sea route? As traders or fleeing persecution?
    • Jewish Mandarins and the Sino-Judaic "Golden Age"
    • Intricacies of the Kaifeng pagoda temple and the Sino-Judaic life cycle
    • Judaism, Confucianism, Catholic missionaries and the "Rites Controversy"
    • Reasons for the decline of Chinese Jewry
    • Jewish life in Kaifeng in modern times
    Ken Blady is a Jewish educator, author and translator of seven works from Yiddish. He was born in Paris, France, and grew up in Chassidic Brooklyn where he attended yeshiva and rabbinical seminary. A San Francisco Bay Area resident since 1972, Ken has a BA in history from the University of California at Berkeley and an MA in clinical counseling from California State University, East Bay. He is the author of Jewish Communities in Exotic Places, among other works. Ken has been featured on radio  and TV talk shows, including The History Channel documentary Operation Magic Carpet, about the airlift of the Jews of Yemen to Israel.

    Daytime Adult Learning and Culture Programs are made possible in part by the John R. Schwabacher Family as well as a grant from the Maimonides Fund at the Jewish Community Federation & Endowment Fund of San Francisco, The Peninsula, Marin, Sonoma and the East Bay.


    Tuesday, January 7
    1:00–2:30 PM
    Schultz Cultural Arts Hall
    $15 or one punch of the Community Tuesdays Punch Card
    No registration required
    Contact: Michelle Rosengaus | (650) 223-8616 | [email protected]



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