Rokhl Kafrissen is a New York-based cultural critic and playwright.
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Tevye Served Raw, Perchik Served Hot

Rokhl’s Golden City: Two Yiddish ‘Fiddlers’ and Funk-a-Deli

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The Messiah Comes to America!

Rokhl’s Golden City: A terrific new translation of Moyshe Nadir’s uproariously acidic take on Depression-era Jewish-American life

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Bury Me Behind the Fence!

Rokhl’s Golden City: The turn-of-the-century proto-feminist melodrama ‘One of Those,’ and the allure of Holocaust-studies failure

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A Yiddish ‘King Lear’ for the Ages, on an Empty Stomach

Rokhl’s Golden City: A superb new production of Jacob Gordin’s Shakespeare adaptation, a dive into the Yiddish folksong archives of proto-ethnomusicologist Ruth Rubin, and a first farewell drag act

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Third Seders and Ghetto Nights

Rokhl’s Golden City: Secular Seders, camp epiphanies, and Yom HaShoah

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Egg-Gazing for Pesakh

Rokhl’s Golden City: yolks with blood spots, jokes with Hebrew subtitles, and ‘The Labor of Life’

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Jews in Space

Rokhl’s Golden City: ‘Canada First’ ideology in non-sappy immigrant-tale theater, an invisible feminist in Toronto, an Easter Egg revealed in ‘Futurama,’ and other dispatches from the orbiting Yiddish cosmos

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A Yiddish Purim Shpil in Tel Aviv

Rokhl’s Golden City: Eritrean detainees read Isaac Bashevis Singer, and the mother tongue meets the mother-land

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A Mormon ‘Khupe’ in Hawaii

Rokhl’s Golden City: Traveling in the land of living ghosts

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Shalokhmones for Hitler and Dueling King Lears

Rokhl’s Golden City: Shakespeare reinvented, Klezmer reimagined, and Yiddish Nobels reframed for Canadian heroes

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No Yortsayts, Please. We’re Yiddish.

Rokhl’s Golden City: Why reports of the death of Yiddish theater are greatly exaggerated

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I Wanna Be Your Goyfriend

Rokhl’s Golden City: Plans for the ‘day of immense goyish significance,’ and other klezmatic holiday delights

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Rokhl’s Khanike Gift List for the Yiddishist in Your Life

Golden City: Support #derkegnshtel and don’t be a seks farbrekher

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How Do You Say Turkey in Yiddish?

Rokhl’s Golden City: Why Yiddish culture, alive and well, needs small but reliable financial support, not saving

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How to Say ‘Halloween’ in Yiddish

Rokhl’s Golden City: Yiddish vampires, Jewish Magic, Frankenstein, and ‘all those other impotent gods’

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Can Officially Sanctioned Soviet Yiddish Culture Be Cool? Where Are the Queers? And Other Tablet Soviet Week Questions

Rokhl’s Golden City: Jewish Bolsheviks, Yiddish songs, ‘Comrade Stalin,’ and the year that changed the world

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Caught With My Khalemoyed in My Hand

Rokhl’s Golden City: In the off-days of Sukkot: not going to shul, going out with observant friends to hear an all-female klezmer band, and visiting Eichmann at a museum

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Jerry Lewis Did Kol Nidre in Clown-Face on Yom Kippur, May His Soul Find a Shining Piece of Paradise

Rokhl’s Golden City: The Jazz Singer, and a legendary klezmer drummer bubbe

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Citizens Transformed Into Raging Animals, in Yiddish

Rokhl’s Golden City: New Yiddish Rep’s version of Ionesco’s Rhinoceros, and a trombonist extraordinaire at KlezKanada

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Yiddish on the Beach

Rokhl’s Golden City: A day in Coney Island

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Summer in the Golden City

Rokhl’s Golden City: Get out while you still can. Hit the Yiddish hills, escape into ’80s TV (when Russians were Russians and women wrestled), or just flee to Canada.

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Yiddish Mumblecore

Rokhl’s Golden City: The ethnographic impulse in Joshua Z. Weinstein’s ‘must-see’ film, Menashe

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Is There Light at the End of the Tunnel?

Rokhl’s Golden City: Irving Penn, Florine Stettheimer, the late, great Uriel Weinreich, and the fragile continuity of Yiddish culture

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‘All-of-a-Kind Family,’ Time Travel, and Frozen in Time

Rokhl’s Golden City: What decomposing unearthed silent-film stock has to say to Yiddishists

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Remembering Homework

Rokhl’s Golden City: Bringing Yiddish children to life, while 1970s New York drops dead

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Barney Miller and ‘God of Vengeance’

Rokhl’s Golden City: What 1970s sitcom TV and 1920s Yiddish theater have in common

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Rokhl’s Golden City: ‘Yentl’ and ‘Painted Bird’ Edition

In this week’s Yiddish-inflected culture guide, Babs and other sort-of-prohibited, cross-dressing, cross-cultural encounters

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Rokhl’s Golden City

Tablet’s new kinda-sorta-weekly column brings you diaspora culture with a Yiddish twist

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