Limmud is booking some star speakers


A rabbi who blessed Barack Obama; a victim of child abuse; and a former PLO representative to the UK are among presenters booked for the Limmud educational conference in December.

Rabbi Sharon Brous, the founding rabbi of an innovative community in Los Angeles, blessed President Obama at his 2013 inauguration. Manny Waks blew the whistle on the sexual abuse of Orthodox schoolchildren in Australia. Husam Zomlot served in the PLO mission in the UK for five years and is now a visiting fellow at Harvard's Centre for Middle Eastern Studies.

The conference is being held for the first time in Birmingham and its cast list also includes the film-makers behind the world's first online Yiddish comedy series, Yid Life Crisis, and Liz Alpern, co-founder of the Gefilteria in New York, which gives a contemporary twist to classic Jewish foods.

Billed as "a Jewish body image activist", Caroline Rothstein's YouTube video has attracted more than 1.6 million views. Tuvia Tenenbom's book, Catch the Jew! caused a stir when it was published earlier this year. It recounts the experiences of the Israeli-born journalist in Israel and the Palestinian territories posing as a German non-Jew.

Also among the speakers are the Israeli Green Party's Noah Efron and neo-Chasidic New York group Zusha, whose set draws from liturgy to reggae, jazz and other music genres.

Programming team co-chair Deborah Blausten was "incredibly excited by the diverse range of presenters who have already confirmed for Limmud - and there are many more still to be confirmed".

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