Authors Alice Nakhimovsky and Roberta Newman will discuss their new book Dear Mendl, Dear Reyzl: Yiddish Letter Manuals from Russia and America at the University of California, Berkeley today. The event will take place at 5 p.m. in the Magnes Collection of Jewish Art and Life auditorium. More information is available on the Magnes website.
At the turn of the 20th century, Jewish families scattered by migration could stay in touch only through letters. But for many Jews who were unaccustomed to communicating their public and private thoughts in writing, correspondence was a challenge. A popular solution was to consult brivnshtelers, Yiddish-language books of model letters. Dear Mendl, Dear Reyzl translates selections from these model-letter books and includes essays and annotations that illuminate their role as guides to a past culture. Visit our website to learn more about the book.