The Jewish Federation Connecting with Community series will host Hugh Black who will discuss James S. Shapiro's book Shakespeare and the Jews, to commemorate the 400th anniversary of Shakespeare's death. This discussion follows the screening of the film The Merchant of Venice on Monday, March 6.
Hugh will also refer to the "remarkable presentation of the Merchant of Venice at Shakespeare & Co." last summer. Hugh plans to bring 4 other books to the program as references that speak to the subject of Shylock's character and anti-Semitism. He said he has heard that "a number of people have expressed the sentiment that they would not see the play because of the anti-Semitic nature." This propelled Hugh into exploring this subject and having the opportunity to discuss it with this audience.
Was Shakespeare an anti-Semite? or, was he a Jew himself, as some have suggested? These views will all be presented and discussed along with the presentation of the film.
This free program is part of the Federation’s Connecting With Community Series and will be followed by a kosher hot lunch. Lunch is a $2 suggested donation for adults over 60 years of age or $7 for all others. Advance reservations are required for lunch and can be made by calling (413) 442-2200 before 9 a.m. on the day of the program.