Yidn, we run this city

So this might not be the most appropriate thing to post on Jewschool, but since everyone is preoccupied (including myself) with the war in the North, I have to admit something so sweet to me: I’m moving to Tel Aviv a week from Sunday. I’ll be there for a year. Yes! I’m mega-excited to be back in Israel after a semester at the Hebrew University last year. I’m pumped to be living in such a complex metropolis; It’s a little nerveracking, of course, but I want to know what in Tel Aviv I shouldn’t be missing: neighborhoods, cafes, museums, nightlife, people, all the things a creative type wouldn’t want to miss.
…And for good measure, dig into how Marc Chagall took a roots trip and turned a shtetl into a fresh spot for young artists.

5 thoughts on “Yidn, we run this city

  1. Curious: the hipster Jews in Tel-Aviv, counterparts to many Jewschoolers in NYC, are quite often non- or anti-Zionist. What is this encounter like?
    Growing up in Israel, I always felt impatient with the privileged Amerikakim who came to MY COUNTRY on various programs designed to get them to MATE with fellow Jews. How dare you keep Tel-Aviv ensnared in a web of international Zionist concern? We want to be free of all that so we can wear keffiyas, hang out with our Arab friends and write ‘Sharon is a Mass Murderer’ on the walls of Davar newspaper on Shenkin St.
    I don’t necessarily advocate the same ‘tude today, but I know many who do….

  2. abu esther,
    i think this encounter, which needs to happen more, is something that both Tel Aviv residents, and young urban American Jews need to focus on. You’re very correct in saying that most American Jews who come to Israel arrive on organized programs, and often these opportunities are their only way of getting to Israel. Whether or not one is interested in the “web of international Zionist concern” is another issue altogether. I’m moving to Tel Aviv because I recieved the Dorot Fellowship, which unlike programs for 20 somethings, is pretty independent and each fellow lives independently.
    I’m interested in Israel, and particularly Tel Aviv, for a number of reasons, most of which pivot off the fact that I’m Jewish, and second that I’m American – two very important aspects of who I am as a writer and an artist. Unlike Israel, where I find many of my friends are interested in becoming less Israeli and more cosmopolitan, many American Jews, who have lived since birth in multicultural, multiracial, secular and immigrant communities are interested in exploring the reverse – where they can be “rooted” “indigenous” and experience a sense of belonging one just doesn’t have in America. The left-wing nature of many urban, Tel Avivi types reflect this American/Israeli Jewish difference. It doesn’t upset me really, since I know that many of my Israeli friends in New York come to New York and realize how Israeli they really are.

  3. this tension is part of why i love spending time in TA. i love watching israelis dabble in other cultures, open fantasy “indian” restaurants, embrace reggae culture, bring home czech lovers from their vacations and openly disdain the isareli jewish establisment.
    this is a trip for me, as a probably overly affiliated jew from the fringe out here in san francisco. they’re doing the opposite thing that i’m doing, and i love the fresh perspective. i often wish i could be back in the bay area, relaxed about my jewish identity. i know that is a choice that i *could* make but i just don’t feel jewish when i’m relaxed and not actively doing anything about it. maybe that’s my personal problem. it’s such a wonderful part of being in israel. i love the flip flop i do whenever i get there.
    my advice: enjoy being in tel aviv, enjoy the flip flop, go hear lots of live dub and eat in funny “oriental” restaurants and don’t worry about it. you’ll meet the artists soon enough. i mena, i could sit here and list my fave cafes, bars and hummus joints but seriously, you’ll find them within a week for yourself! and then you’ll run into the same damn 15 people everywhere you go anyway, lol.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

The reCAPTCHA verification period has expired. Please reload the page.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.