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Learning from Latino Jews: Preconceptions, Authenticity, and Paradox



Senior Landecker Fellow Maia Ferdman recently published an article about Latinx Jewish identity in the new edition of the Peoplehood Papers.

In this personal piece titled “Learning from Latino Jews: Preconceptions, Authenticity, and Paradox,” Maia highlights how much one can learn particularly about building a strong sense of self and of community.

Latinx Jews, especially those in the United States, “embody the paradoxical fact that we can be both of a place, and not of a place, belonging to and not belonging to multiple overlapping peoples,” Maia explains, sharing about her paradoxical discoveries in Argentina and beyond.

“Accepting that I embody these paradoxes makes me more whole.”

Furthermore, Maia adds that accepting that she embodies such paradox makes her a more resilient community-builder. “This lack of a totally shared heritage does not diminish my own strong sense of self,” she adds.

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Maia is one of thirty 2021-2022 Landecker Democracy Fellows. This fellowship, a collaboration between the Alfred Landecker Foundation and Humanity in Action, was created to strengthen a new generation of leaders whose approaches to political and social challenges can become catalysts for democratic placemaking and community building. Read more about the fellowship here.