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Is Got fun Nekome a Queer Play? A Panel Presentation

5-6:30 p.m. in the Main Lecture Hall

Got fun Nekome (God of Vengeance) is a play written by Sholem Asch. It is the story of a girl named Rivkele, whose father owns and runs a brothel in the basement of their house. To escape her father’s oppressive hold, Rivkele goes to the downstairs world and ends up falling in love with one of the women who works there, Manke. This play challenges ideas of what makes pure (Kosher) Jewish identity, and what makes a pure (Kosher) relationship.

Harley Erdman is a translator, theater historian, playwright, and dramaturge with specialties in Jewish-American theater and Spanish and Latin American theater. He has published numerous articles on the history of Jewish representation on the American stage, as well as the book Staging the Jew. His article on the Yiddish play God of Vengeance won the Kahn Award for Outstanding Essay from the American Society for Theater Research.

Warren Hoffman received his Ph.D. in American literature from the University of California Santa Cruz, where he worked on Jewish American literature, theater, and queer studies. His book The Passing Game: Queering Jewish American Culture was released by Syracuse University Press in March 2009. Warren has taught at Hunter College, Rutgers University, the University of Delaware, and currently teaches at Temple University. In addition to his academic work, Warren is a theater professional, having most recently served three years as the dramaturge and literary manager for Philadelphia Theatre Company, where he worked with such playwrights as Terrence McNally, Christopher Durang, and David Henry Hwang.

Naomi Seidman is Koret Professor of Jewish Culture and Director of the Center for Jewish Studies at the Graduate Theological Union in Berkeley. Her first book, A Marriage Made in Heaven: The Sexual Politics of Hebrew and Yiddish, appeared in 1997; her second, Faithful Renderings: Jewish-Christian Difference and the Politics of Translation, was published in 2006. She is presently doing research on Sarah Schenirer and the origins of the Bais Yakov school movement in interwar Poland, and working on a volume entitled The Sexual Transformation of Ashkenaz.


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