At the beginning of the 20th century Montreal is, with New York, one of the two major Yiddish speaking cities in North America as thousands of Ashkenazi Jews were crossing the Atlantic buoyed by hopes of a better world, bringing with them a very lively Yiddish culture which found a unique locus of expression in Montreal. Today, this world has disappeared but it has also become transformed; leaving a heritage that is little remembered. Who knows today that the Monument National was at one time an important venue of Yiddish culture? That Yiddish was a language spoken in the family of many Anglo-Montrealers like Mordecai Richler or Irving Layton? That verses written by Pamphile LeMay were at one time translated in Yiddish? That many European artistic movements found an echo in the Montreal Yiddish-speaking milieus of the twenties? Discover Yiddish Montreal in all its wealth and complexity, as it was in the 1900s, as it is today, where emotional traces of its former glory can be found.
Faculty: Chantal Ringuet