The Religious Socialism podcast features monthly interviews with leading religious activists and thinkers on social justice, politics and faith—with a good dose of socialism. We take care to spotlight women, LGBTQ+ folks and people of color who are at the forefront of change.
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Today, April 19th, is the 76th anniversary of the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising. It was the largest single revolt by Jews during WWII and it was mostly organized by the Bund, a secular Jewish socialist movement. Irena Klepfisz was born in the Warsaw Ghetto and fled with her mother to the United States when she was eight. She is now a noted poet, writer, Yiddish translator, anti-occupation activist, known for her work in lesbian, feminist and Jewish spaces. This personal interview touches on Irena's childhood, the "zeitgeist" of American Jewish bundist life, coming out in the 1970's, her activism against Israel's occupation, and how she makes sense of the contemporary resurgence of interest in Yiddish. Part 2 of this interview series will feature Daniel Soyer, who will provide a historical and academic perspective on the Jewish Labor Bund.