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Documentary film Divan to be shown Wednesday

The documentary Divan, which chronicles filmmaker Pearl Gluck’s physical and emotional journey to Hungary in search of her roots, will be shown at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 14, in the Whitaker Lab Auditorium.

Gluck will be on hand to introduce the film and answer questions after the screening.

The event, which is sponsored by the Philip and Muriel Berman Center for Jewish Studies and Religion Studies Department, in cooperation with the Allentown Jewish Community Center’s Jewish and Israeli Film Series, is free and open to the public.

At the age of 15, Gluck left her Orthodox Jewish clan in a Hasidic neighborhood in Brooklyn for secular life in Manhattan, but continued to be influenced by her background. As the first Yiddish Fulbright scholar, she set off to Hungary in 1998 to collect oral histories and Yiddish tales. As she did, her past began to haunt her.

While grappling with this legacy, Gluck met other people who had also left the Hasidic and ultra-Orthodox world. Their voices take the film out of the realm of the strictly biographical and into a larger communal narrative.

Divan was screened at multiple film festivals, including the 2001 Sundance Film Festival, as a work in progress. The film was supported by the New York State Council on the Arts, the National Foundation for Jewish Culture’s Fund for Documentary Film, the Fulbright Scholar Program, the Institute for International Education, and others.

For more information, call (610) 758-3352.

Posted on Thursday, September 08, 2005

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