Film Screening & Discussion of “The Forward: From Immigrants to Americans”
September 30 @ 6:00 pm - 7:30 pmDonation
From its founding in New York in 1897, the Forward served as a mentor and secular rabbi to hundreds of thousands of Jewish immigrants. Not only was the Yiddish language newspaper a socialist advocate for sweatshop workers, it was a literary beacon featuring giants like I.B. Singer as well as translations of world literature. It pioneered special features such as the famous and much loved “A Bintel Brief” (the first “Dear Abby”), and its “Gallery of Missing Husbands.” The Forward: From Immigrants to Americans (1988, 58 Minutes) is a funny, affectionate, and soulful film which traces the origins of rich secular Jewish tradition handed down throughout the generations.
Enjoy the film with us and join a virtual conversation about the pioneering historic documentary between the filmmakers Marlene Booth, Linda Matchan, and the Forward’s current Editor-in-Chief, former reporter and editor of The New York Times, Jodi Rudoren.
This program is held in conjunction with the exhibition Pressed: Images from the Jewish Daily Forward on view at the Museum at Eldridge Street through Sunday, October 3, 2021.
The film will be available for you to stream at your own pace a week before the date of the program. This conversation will take place over Zoom.
About the Speakers
Marlene Booth is an award-winning documentary filmmaker who brings a personal vision to stories that span generations, locales, ethnicities, class, and gender. Her major films include: The Forward: From Immigrants to Americans; Yidl in the Middle: Growing Up Jewish in Iowa; Pidgin: The Voice of Hawai’i; Kū Kanaka/Stand Tall; The Double Burden: Three Generations of Working Mothers; and They Had a Dream: Brown v. Board of Education 25 Years Later. Her award-winning films have aired on PBS, screened at national and international film festivals, and are used in classrooms nationwide.
Linda Matchan is a journalist and documentary filmmaker specializing in issues relating to social justice and racism. She was a longtime writer and editor at the Boston Globe and now works independently as a writer for The Forward, the Boston Globe Magazine, and the Washington Post. Her films include The Forward: From Immigrants to Americans; Circus Without Borders about suicide among Inuit youth in Arctic Canada; and Lost Ancestors for the Legacy Museum in Montgomery, Alabama, addressing the legacy of the slave trade. She has received several grants for international reporting from the Pulitzer Center, and works with its educational program speaking to middle and high school students nationwide.
Jodi Rudoren became Editor-in-Chief of the Forward, the nation’s oldest independent Jewish news organization, in September 2019 after more than two decades as a reporter and editor at The New York Times. She is helping lead a transformation of the storied 123-year-old institution, a nonprofit that went digital-only in early 2019.
At The Times, Jodi served as Jerusalem bureau chief from 2012 through 2015, covering two Israeli elections and two wars in Gaza. She previously covered the 2004 American presidential campaign, and served as Chicago bureau chief, education correspondent and education editor, and deputy on both the Metropolitan and International desks, before joining the masthead as Associate Managing Editor for Audience Strategy.
A longtime digital innovator, Jodi was executive producer of the multimedia series “One in 8 Million,” which won NYTimes.com’s first Emmy Award, in 2009, and served on the 2020 committee about the newsroom of the future. She also serves on the Board of Directors of the Fuller Project, a nonprofit newsroom doing groundbreaking investigative work on issues that affect women.