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Along the Silk Roads to Jerusalem: A Voyage into Bukharian Jewish History and Culture

Hosted By: Qesher

The experience of the native Jews of Central Asia—Bukharian Jews—is at a unique intersection of Sephardic, Mizrahi, and Russian-speaking Jewish identities. Qesher will explore the eclectic story of this millennia-old Jewish community, discovering the ways in which Bukharian Jews have developed their multifaceted and rich culture while also shedding light on how their journey fits into the broader historical saga of the Jewish people.

The event listed here is hosted by a third party. My Jewish Learning/70 Faces Media is not responsible for its content or for errors in the listing.


Ruben Shimonov

Ruben Shimonov is an educator, community builder, and social entrepreneur passionate about Jewish diversity. He previously served as Director of Community Engagement & Education at Queens College Hillel, where he had the unique role of creating meaningful Jewish experiences for Sephardic and Mizrahi students. Currently, Ruben is the National Director of Sephardi House & Young Leadership at the American Sephardi Federation. Among his various roles at ASF, he serves as an educator and the director of a national student fellowship that seeks to infuse the warmth, wisdom, and diversity of the Greater Sephardic world into campus life. He is also the Founding Executive Director of the Sephardic Mizrahi Q Network—a grassroots organization building a supportive and much-needed community for LGBTQ+ Sephardic and Mizrahi Jews—as well as Director of Educational Experiences & Programming for the Muslim-Jewish Solidarity Committee. As a visual artist, Ruben uses his multilingual Arabic-Hebrew-Persian calligraphy to build Muslim-Jewish interfaith bridges. In 2018, Ruben was listed among The Jewish Week’s “36 Under 36” emerging leaders and changemakers. Ruben has lectured extensively on the histories and cultures of Sephardic and Mizrahi communities. Among his speaking engagements, Ruben has taught at New York University, University of Southern California, multiple Limmud conferences (United Kingdom, South Africa, Australia, New York, Seattle), Jews of Color Torah Academy, and Hillel International.
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There are Jewish communities all around the globe with their own unique history, culture, places, and most of all, people and stories. All of them different, but sharing so much. The aim of Qesher is to connect these different Jewish traditions, not just to know of each other, but to learn about each other. We believe that there is great value in creating a deeper understanding within the Jewish world and exploring Jewish experiences and identities in all their diversity.
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