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A Tale of Two Languages

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My will-o’-the wisp impression as a secular Jew living in a predominantly non-Jewish environment in England, is that Yiddish is experiencing a resurgence within Jewish communities throughout the world. I hope that this is the case. It was a language once thought to be at risk of being eclipsed by Hebrew and I have read of the determination on the part of robust young Jews in the early days of the Zionist movement to consign it to the past as a relic of a lost world, to be remembered and mourned but to be replaced by a revived Hebrew language in the newly established State of Israel.

Yiddish was the language of my parents’ childhood. However, after their families emigrated to South Africa they cultivated English as the medium through which they would conduct their daily lives. My father became a teacher in an English medium state school and both my parents spoke English without a trace of a Yiddish accent,........

© The Times of Israel (Blogs)

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