Mizrahi in Berlin
“Mizrahi in Berlin” is an intimate performance by poet and author Mati Shemoelof. What happens to a writer when moving to a place where the language he writes in is no longer that of the majority but a minoritarian one, furtive and spoken by few? What are the ties that connect the literary work of an Israeli based in Berlin to that of other Jewish authors across the world’s different disaporas?
Shemoelof will tell us of the adventures and wonders he encountered in his home city, of his ties to Europe as a Mizrahi Jew whose mother was born in Bagdad. He will discuss the way in which Arabs in Berlin perceive him, compared with how Europeans do, and on what connects a Mizrahi Israeli with women from former East Germany. Shemoelof will raise the question of whether all Israelis living in Berlin are actually Mizrahis, and what life looks like when you reside in the West while your origin country is in the East. And a further question: Are there any borders in the age of the internet? Shemoelof is accompanied by musician Gilad Roth, on Saxophone.