Yiddishland California – San Diego, California - Atlas Obscura

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Yiddishland California

The Yiddish language stages a renaissance in a shtetl-inspired cultural center on the San Diego coast. 


While it’s located just blocks away from the Pacific Ocean, when visitors step into Yiddishland, they are immersed in traditional Yiddish culture. 

Yiddishland California is the physical home of the Yiddish Arts and Academics Association of North America (YAAANA), whose mission is to preserve and advance Yiddish language and culture within the U.S. and beyond. While La Jolla experienced a spate of housing discrimination against Jews from the 1920s to the 1960s, Yiddishland now functions as a Jewish cultural center,  classroom, and art gallery featuring many works of Seymour Rosenthal, a Bronx artist whose work depicts the intersection of Judaic spirituality and American working-class struggle. Events include Jewish Cabaret, Polish, Yiddish, and Hebrew language lessons, concerts, and lectures. 

While it’s inspired by the distinctly Jewish shtetls of Central and Eastern Europe, Yiddishland is expressly secular and seeks to engage anyone interested in Yiddish language and culture.

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