Universal Diaspora – Words from a Yiddish Mystic


I’ve always been intrigued by the motif of diaspora whether it’s the Jewish dispersion in the time of Jeremiah (whose picture I have in my study), or whether it’s today with the dispersion of Christian believers from the culture.

I was therefore intrigued to come across a Jewish publication called “Tablet”, (Not THE Tablet, a UK-based liberal Catholic magazine)


The article is about artist Daniel Kahn who writes and sings from a Yiddish perspective.

Yiddish (ייִדיש, יידיש or אידיש, yidish or idish, pronounced [ˈ(j)ɪdɪʃ], lit. ’Jewish’; ייִדיש-טײַטש, Yidish-Taytsh, lit. ’Judeo-German’)[8] is a West Germanic language historically spoken by Ashkenazi Jews. It originated during the 9th century[9] in Central Europe, providing the nascent Ashkenazi community with a High German-based vernacular fused with many elements taken from Hebrew (notably Mishnaic) and to some extent Aramaic.

In his song, Universal Dispora, Daniel suggests that Jewishness is not to do with blood or land or religion but something else. Maybe something to do with wandering ??



Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *