Yiddish is making a comeback. There are university classes in Yiddish, Fiddler on the Roof was performed off-Broadway in Yiddish in 2019 and Mandy Patinkin sang Shawn Mendes’ Stitches on the Late, Late Show. Whether our grandparents spoke it at home as their Mame-loshen (mother tongue) or we are using a few phrases with our kids, Yiddish seems to be the language that forever links Ashkenazi Jews to their Eastern European ancestry.
In a 2022 article from jewishunpacked.com, author Shaked Karabelnicoff discusses where you can find Yiddish speaking communities in North America. In addition, he lists Tik Tok, Duolingo, and YouTube as sources for Yiddish lessons or music videos in Yiddish. Yiddish as making a comeback and boasting an increasing in the number of speakers outside the Chasidic Jewish community. It is not a dying language says an article on livexp.com.
“In a world where languages come and go, some defy the odds and leave an indelible mark on cultural heritage. Once thriving and ubiquitous, Yiddish faced a tumultuous history, but its legacy lives on. Today, efforts are underway to preserve and revitalize this linguistic and cultural treasure.”
So how well do you know some of these Yiddish phrases? Take the quiz here.