by Noah Kulwin
Covering the Yiddish beat at the New York Times is no easy task, as everywhere a New York Times reporter walks there’s something Yiddish happening.
- “A Yiddish Revival, With New York Leading the Way,” October 17, 2007
- “A Gentile Who Lives for Yiddish,” January 27, 2012
- “Some Say the Spelling of a Winning Word Just Wasn’t Kosher,” May 31, 2013
- “Passing the Time Until He Arrives: ‘Waiting for Godot,’ Translated Into Yiddish,” October 8, 2013
And yet, some alarming news from the court system:
The [mistrial] decision came after a week and a half of testimony that included reports of cash-stuffed envelopes delivered as bribes, boozy visits to strip clubs and a scheme that teamed a developer desperate to reduce his own likely prison sentence with an undercover federal agent known as Raj.
And the proceedings fell apart because of Yiddish.
[P]rosecutors had failed to turn over promptly to the defense more than 70 hours of wiretapped conversations, about a third of them in Yiddish, and translating and digesting them would require jurors to serve longer than some could manage.
The Yiddish revival: bupkis?
Noah Kulwin is The Awl’s summer intern.