Ladino Today

Is the language of Sephardic Jews, undergoing a revival?

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Although Yiddish suffered greatly in the Holocaust, the blow to Ladino was even stronger, says Balch, the Ladino translator. The communities of Salonika and other centers of Ladino were completely destroyed, and since there have always been fewer Ladino speakers than Yiddish speakers, the surviving Ladino-speaker pool was much smaller.

Ladino scholars and activists are passionate about preserving the music and humor of Ladino language and literature, and as the Israeli government puts its muscle into language preservation, there is renewed hope that "our Spanish" will indeed remain ours.

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Aviya Kushner

Aviya Kushner is a Lecturer of Creative Writing at Columbia College of Chicago. She is the author of And There Was Evening, And There Was Morning.