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Asian

Chinese Jews Face Existential Question

For much of the past millennium, Jews in Kaifeng— descendants of merchants who arrived here from Persia, probably around the 11th century—have been struggling with an existential question: What does it mean to be Jewish?

Expanding the Definition of Jewish Food One Rice Ball at a Time

Homemade inari sushi, mandle bread, rice balls, spicy edamame, hamantaschen, and rice crispy treats. If there was anything incongruous about the offerings at the recent bake sales for Japan earthquake relief at Brandeis Hillel Day School, a pluralistic Jewish day school in San Francisco, no one seemed to notice. The mix of Jewish, Japanese and American treats spoke directly to the palates of this unique modern Jewish community.

International Adoption: From a Broken Bond to an Instant Bond

Scott Simon — the sonorous voice of NPR’s “Weekend Edition” — has written a short, tender book about the two most important people in the world. At least to him. “Baby, We Were Meant for Each Other” recounts the arrival of his two daughters, Elise and Lina, from China, while telling the stories of other families changed by adoption.

Asian Jewry Undergoing Renaissance

The American Jewish Yearbook shows that there was a total of about 1,000 Jews in Hong Kong and China in the mid 1990s, and another 1,000 in Japan. Today, there are perhaps 5,000 in Hong Kong alone, with another 2,000 in Shanghai.