It was a thrill on so many levels to host this panel for DW Culture – as our first in-person event since the start of the pandemic – and as part of the official celebrations marking 1,700 years of Jewish life in Germany.

The idea was to explore what it means to be Jewish in Germany today, with a focus on the increasingly diverse narratives of young, Jewish creatives. Joining me in the atrium of Berlin’s Jewish Museum were mezzo-soprano Shai Terry, writer and journalist Dmitry Kapitelman, and Deborah Feldman, author of the bestselling memoir “Unorthodox.” Hetty Berg, the museum’s Director, and Rabbinical Studies major Levi Israel Ufferfilge added perspective to discussions of identity and belonging in a time when anti-semitic crimes are on the rise. Thanks to all for their insightful contributions, and to Shai Terry for closing the evening with a magical Hebrew song.

Deborah Feldman’s bestselling memoir “Unorthodox” about her escape from a strict Hasidic community in New York was the inspiration for the successful Netflix series of the same name.

Israeli mezzo-soprano Shai Terry: “Home is where you can live the best version of yourself.”

Dmitry Kapitelman’s childhood and teenage years in Leipzig were dominated by the constant threat of neo-Nazis.

Photos: © DW / Jan Röhl