Limmud FSU coming to Princeton


(JTA) — More than 500 young Russian-American Jews are expected to gather at Princeton University for a Limmud FSU conference.

The conference, which is designed to bring its participants closer to Jewish history and culture, will take place on the New Jersey campus from Friday to Sunday.

Limmud FSU is a festival of Jewish learning featuring lectures, workshops, roundtable discussions, music and an array of cultural events presented in Russian, English and Hebrew. Its goal is to bridge young Russian-speaking Jews and their disconnect from the American Jewish community.

The program will focus on the life and work of Albert Einstein. Other topics include Jewish philanthropy, Israel and the Iranian threat, the Arab Spring and the future of Israel, Russian media in the U.S., and the Israeli economy. Presenters are leading academics, politicians, writers and artists from the U.S., Israel, Russia and elsewhere.

“Limmud FSU is a unique opportunity for the Russian-speaking Jewish community to create something new, educational, thought provoking and, most importantly, our own,” said Alina Bitel, a participant from New York. “The program inspires a pluralistic approach to Jewish engagement and fills a void that has been created for those who don’t find a place for themselves in traditional Jewish institutions."

Some 750,000 to 1 million Russian-American Jews are living in the U.S., with approximately half in New York and New Jersey.

Limmud conferences also will be held this year in Belarus, Moldova, Ukraine, Israel and elsewhere in the United States. A conference last month in Moscow attracted about 1,000 young people and focused on Russia as a society undergoing change in general and for its Jewish citizens.

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