Friday, May 13, 2005

What's a Litvak?

What's a Litvak?

A "litvak" is a Lithuanian Jew. Compared to the other Eastern European Jews, the stereotypical Litvak was skeptical, rational, smart, analytical, worldly (as opposed to the mystical Hassidim), proud, stubborn, dynamic, and energetic.
Their descendants live on, but, thanks to the Nazis (and no small thanks to the Lithuanians), not nearly as many as there ought to be, and not in Lithuania.
Except for not really being from Lithuania (my family's from Galicia*, Germany and Belarus (whose inhabitants were likely Litvaks)), the profile fits me pretty well ... though I don't really have much of the "kalte" (cold, emotionally restrained) Litvak to me.

I hope this blog gives you an insight into my inner Litvaktude.

*No, not the one in Spain. So Google it!

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