October 11, 2011
The expulsion of the Jews from Spain in 1492 gave rise to a series of rich, diverse diasporas that were interconnected through a common vision and joie de vivre. The exodus took these Sephardim to other European countries; to North Africa, Asia Minor, and South America; and, eventually, to the American colonies. In each community new literary and artistic forms grew out of the melding of their Judeo-Spanish legacy with the cultures of their host countries, and that process has continued to the present day. This multilingual tradition brought with it both opportunities and challenges that will resonate within any contemporary culture: the status of minorities within the larger society; the tension between a civil, democratic tradition and the anti-Semitism ready to undermine it; and the opposing forces of religion and secularism. This anthology contains fiction, memoirs, essays, and poetry from twenty-eight writers who span more than 150 years.