Black Jews, the Roots of the Olive Tree

DO 15 NOV 19.30


BLACK JEWS, THE ROOTS OF THE OLIVE TREE BY LAURENCE GAVRON
SENEGAL / FRANCE 2016 BLU RAY OV 54 MIN
IN THE PRESENCE OF LAURENCE GAVRON


In the course of the 20th century, a large number of groups in various Sub-Saharan countries (South Africa, Nigeria, Ghana, Uganda, Cameroon, Mali, Ivory Coast, etc.) spontaneously converted to Judaism and claimed Jewish identity. These communities respect the worship rituals and dietary restrictions of Judaism, which they often learn from the Internet, as well as Jewish culture (cuisine, music, language, etc.). The leaders of several of these communities have travelled to Israel to train and study in Yeshivas to become Rabbis. From the end of the 19th century, we already knew of the existence of many black Jews in the United States. Today, they number apparently more than 100,000 in North America. The film gives an account of this black Judaism, through an African community – that of Cameroon, with Serge Etélé as its leader.


LAURENCE GAVRON is from France. She now lives in Dakar, Senegal, where she works as a film director and writer. Fascinated by African cultures, she has produced documentaries on local musicians, griots and on the work of director Djibril Diop Mambéty. She also writes regularly for local newspapers and participated in several photographic exhibitions.

 

Supporting Film

Transitions


BY AÄLÄM-WÄRQE & KOBI DAVIDIAN
ETHIOPIA / ISRAEL 2016 DCP OV 15 MIN


The short film by the Israeli-Ethiopian directors Aäläm-Wärqe & Kobi Davidian tells the story of the identity of 18-year-old Mimi, who reconstructs her immigration history from Ethiopia to Israel.