anonymous asked:

May i ask to Miriam (and in extesion, to Chaim) what are the diferences concearning the division of the jewish community in Brazil? I may be wrong since i'm not a american, but in USA, you have ashkenazis, sephardis and iranian identifying as jews but living separeted (again, don't wanna sound ignorant, its just lack of knowledge in general). But in Brazil, since the jewish population in SA tends to be smaller, does divisions exists or the intra-ethnicity you belong is "overlooked"?

The divisions and differences are not at all overlooked in Brazil. The Sephardi and Mizrahi communities in Brazil are hundreds of years old, while the Ashkenazi communities are very young (approx. WWII and after). There’s plenty of conflicts between our communities, and it’s very common for Brazilian Ashkenazim to reject Brazilian Sephardim and Mizrahim based on skin colour, as well as considering us inferior (regardless of skin colour). 

Most of the Sephardim and Mizrahim come from the north (the Amazon) because when the second wave of Jewish immigration — the first wave started in the 1500s, with Sephardim fleeing the Iberian Peninsula, but a significant amount fled to the US and founded the first Jewish community in what was then called New Amsterdam (now New York City) when the Inquisition came after them; many stayed behind (the Brazilian Anusim) — started, most of the Jews were coming from Tetuan and Tangier (Morocco) and settling in Belém (where I was born), and then being sent to the rubber farms in the inner part of the Amazon. Eventually they started building synagogues along the way (now long gone), settling, and reached Manaus. Belém and Manaus are still the core centres for Sephardim and Mizrahim in Brazil. Although in the more recent decades many made their way to Rio de Janeiro, because of the dwindling economy in the north of the country.

And around and post-WWII two new groups started arriving: the Eastern European Jews, and other Mizrahim (who didn’t come in the previous wave, and were made refugees due to the exodus from MENA in the earlier years). These Mizrahi newcomers stayed in the southeast part of Brazil (major cities: São Paulo and Rio de Janeiro), and never came to the north, but instead many joined the Sephardi and Mizrahi communities came from the north to southeast Brazil. 

The Ashkenazim remain mostly in São Paulo and Rio but also in Belo Horizonte, as well as other smaller cities. There’s a surprising (to some) number of Ashkenazi haredim in Rio.

There’s not much interaction between Sephardi/Mizrahi and Ashkenazi communities.

Vintage set of playing cards depicting Jewish women’s folk costumes from around the world. The countries, fro right to left, are as follows:

First row: Turkey, Bulgaria, Hodu (India), Yazan (Wiesen; could be Switzerland, Austria, or Bavaria, apparently)

Second row: Hungaria, Holland, Turkmenistan, Israel

Third row: Russia, Serbia (fun fact: for a second I misread it as Siberia), Teiman (Yemen), Italy

Fourth row: Poland, (This one I can’t entirely read, but I think it says Paras, or Persia. Interestingly, it looks more like Uzbek clothing), Kavkaz (the Caucasus), Romania

  1. A man in a white tālēt (Sephard)
  2. Two girls pose in traditional clothes (Daghestan)
  3. Barnaby Yeh of the Sino-Judaic Institute leads morning prayers (Kaifeng, China)
  4. “[Haredim] Jews of the Belz Hasidic Dynasty attend the wedding ceremony of Rabbi Shalom Rokach, the Grandson of the Belz Rabbi, in traditional dress” (Jerusalem)
  5. Four boys at a bar mitzvah (Abujah, Nigeria)
  6. “ As a Jew of color, you’re this mythical creature that supposedly doesn’t exist. He’s been writing a book about his life that’s going to be called Thoughts From a Unicorn.” -Gulienne Rollins-Rison (United States)

If you have any corrections about the images, sources, or the terminology used, please notify me directly as to opposed to reblogging so I’m more likely to see it. 

EDIT: I have been informed that the term “ultra-Orthodox” is a offensive term and that the word “Haredim” is preferred. I copy-and-pasted from the original source, who used the term, and I was unaware of the connotation of the word, being non-Jewish myself. I have changed the world here and I apologize to those who were hurt by my usage of the word. 


Mizrahi/Sephardic Jews sing middle eastern/north African Shabbat songs

Mizrahi/Sephardic Jews are the indigenous Jewish communities of the middle east & north Africa (Morocco, Algeria, Tunisia, Libya, Egypt, Syria, Iraq, Lebanon, Palestine, Yemen, Iran, Afghanistan, Turkey, Kurdistan, Uzbekistan etc.

Emma Lazarus was an American Jewish poet born in New York City. She was born to Sephardi parents, whose families were originally from Portugal.

From an early age, she studied American and British literature and started writing her own poems, which attracted the attention of Ralph Waldo Emerson.

She became more interested in her Jewish heritage after reading the George Eliot novel Daniel Deronda and learning about the Russian pogroms, which forced thousands of Jews to leave their home. Lazarus then began to advocate for Jewish refugees and helped establish the Hebrew Technical Institute, which provided vocational training to Jewish immigrants.

Lazarus is best known for “The New Colossus”, a sonnet written in 1883. Its lines appear on a plaque on the pedestal of the Statue of Liberty.

She also argued for the creation of a Jewish homeland thirteen years before the term Zionism was used.

You can read some of her work here:

The Poems of Emma Lazarus (vol. 1; vol. 2), which includes famous works such as The Spagnoletto, The New Colossus, and The Dance to Death.

i’m gonna make a zine that’s gonna loosely just be about being young and Jewish in the 2010s and it would be cool if people wanted to contribute, not sure what i’m looking for yet but would love perspectives from jews of colour (and other ethnic groups like sephardim, mizrachim, etc.), people who are both ethnically and religiously jewish, one or the other, basically jew want a broad variety of jewish youth, so feel free to message me if u wanna be involved

yo goyim, calling all mizrahim “sephardic jews” is problematic because sephardic is derived from the hebrew word for spanish, and not all of us have links to spain/iberian peninsula. in fact, a huge chunk of us don’t! so please stop trying to force all mizrahim into a sephardic identity, please and thank you.

So, Why Are There “White“ Jews?

There are Jews, whos skin tone is lighter, and who are more genetically distant than their counterparts. Ashkanaziim have a roughly 50% leventine match, compared to sephardim and mizrachim’s ~75% and 80%.

Why is this?

Anti semites, usually antisemitic LEFTISTS, will claim that this is because white people (polish, german, russian, ukrainian, ect) have infiltrated and corrupted Judaism. They claim ashkanaziim are the descendants of the Khazars.

They are wrong, or atleast they are not correct.

The existences the Khazars is a widely disputed topic. If they did exist, it is unclear if they were founded by Jews, converted in, or if mearly the rulers converted.

so: claim 1. Ashkanaziim are descended from converts, who are not “real jews“, and thus have infiltrated Judaism.

debunkment: Converts are concidered real Jews by judaism. If the claim that a great rabbi convinced the King to convert and his nation followed suite is true, then theya re all VALID converts.

Claim 2: Khazars were white in the first place

debunkment: Given the geographical area at the time, they most likely weren’t. If they existed, I supped they could technically be qualified as true Caucasians or possibly Russian. They were most likely from the same group as Armenians, Georgians, chechnyns, ect. They might have also possible have been ethnic Slavs, which I’d like to kinda remind tumblr, have never been considered white. Even if they all are to be considered white NOW, certainly they wouldn’t have been so at the time.

claim 3: “white“ Jews are white, because converts.

debunkment: most jews who are white passing are white passing because of the cossacks, or because eastern europian pogroms that occured later on.

claim 4: “white” Jews.

Ashkanazim come in all colors. Sephardim come in all colors. They are culture identifiers. Jews, by definition, CANNOT be white. “White“ is a social construct wich emerged during the colonialist era, and jews were not part of it. Jews ability to whitepass is directly related to those individuals will to hide their jewish-ness. It is conditional. Traditional jewish wear is middle eastern. If I wore my traditional garb, which I intend to do somewhat when I’m older, It would be a headscarf or a turban if a man.

- a “white passing” Sephardi woman who intends on going Hijabi when shes older.

@jewish-privilege @antisemitic @marcoboat @returnofthejudai @antisemisogyny @antisemitism-eu

anonymous asked:

Lastly, like I said before the only reason the MENA region currently holds such anti-semitic views is cause of Israel, they never had such views before. As soon as the Israel problem is taken care of its pretty much 99.9% likely that they'll forgive Jews and go back to being okay with them, right now those views are simply because of resentment and feelings of anger over having their land taken. Yes Jews had always been second class citizens in their countries but Christian gentiles were too!

The MENA region never singled out Jews in particular, they gave second-class status citizenship to ALL non-Muslims INCLUDING gentiles, so no you’re wrong, they were never particularly anti-semitic before Israel. And hey sure the Jews were second-class citizens but they still lived fairly comfortable lives, they just had to pay extra taxes and build their houses certain ways. May I remind you that a lot of the Jewish golden ages were in Muslim countries? They LIKED their life there!

You know, I could direct you to all of the “history of the Jews in ____” wikipedia entries, and the excellent book “In Ishmael’s House,” which proves you very wrong.  I could tell you how Jews in Jerusalem were literally taxed to death by the jizya for hundreds of years, how missionaries brought toxic antisemitism, including the Protocols of the Elders of Zion, into the MENA region, how Christians in the MENA ganged up against Jews as well because they thought it would improve their second-class status.  I could tell you that in that “Golden Age,” Jews were not allowed to walk on the same side of the street as Muslims, and that the peace in Islamic Spain was immediately followed by an Islamist rule that gave Jews the option of forced conversion to Islam or murder (see: Maimonides).  I could tell you that my family left Syria not long after one of my relatives was arrested in a blood libel before Zionism was even a word on Jews’ tongues.  I could tell you about the Farhud, which was inspired and inflamed by Nazi propaganda.  I could tell you about how the MENA isn’t a happy region of blissfully ignorant “noble savages,” but a region comprised of a number of complex countries and nationalities and ethncities that are heavily influenced by the changing worlds around them.  I could tell you how antisemtism was exploited by Arab leaders, chief among them Gamal Abdel Nasser, and that ideologies have permeated society.  I could tell you about how I read Middle East discourse for my job, and the only thing any country can agree on is that Jews are a worthy scapegoat, and that that unity will not be abandoned anytime soon.  I can point you to the work of Esti Webman and Martin Gilbert and so many others.

But it’s clear that you’re living in a dream world that is completely disconnected from reality, and all of this history would be lost on you. 


Since Sephardim are highly under-represtented in jumblr compared to Ashkenazim. Here a Sephardic Jewish wedding from Morocco! 


really cool video of the history of Sephardi Jews

the last minute is the best part


Listen to this fantastic song in Ladino.