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Chosen To Be Funny: Jewish Comedy Is No Laughing Matter

Evening Program with Book Signing

Evening Lecture/Seminar

Tuesday, May 21, 2019 - 6:45 p.m. to 8:45 p.m. ET
Code: 1L0249
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Gene Wilder and Gilda Radner in "Haunted Honeymoon"

Jewish comedy is serious business. It can be traced back to biblical times--and to a people who learned to meet the uncaring universe head on with a punchline.

Columbia professor Jeremy Dauber draws on his book, Jewish Comedy: A Serious History, as he traces the genre’s origins and evolution and shows how it has mirrored, and sometimes even shaped, the course of Jewish history. Persecution, cultural assimilation, religious revival, diaspora, Zionism—all were grist for the Jewish comic mill and provided material for everything from Biblical satires to medieval skits to Borscht Belt routines. He’ll discuss all these along the way—along with some of the greatest Jewish jokes in history.

Copies of Jewish Comedy (W.W. Norton) are available for sale and signing.

Hirshhorn Museum & Sculpture Garden
Marion & Gustave Ring Auditorium
7th St & Independence Ave SW
Metro: L'Enfant Plaza