Hunter College Schools
Presented by Sarah Benor, Vice Provost and Professor of Contemporary Jewish Studies, Hebrew Union College
Which names do Jews and non-Jews associate most with Jews? How do Jews of different ages, ancestries, and religious orientations vary in the names they select for their children and their pets? How have American Jews' names changed over time? Who names their children after deceased and living relatives, and who has a "Starbucks name"? This lecture answers these questions using the results of a new study of American Jewish Personal Names, based on a survey with over 11,000 responses. The results are discussed in the context of American Jewish society and historical Jewish naming practices around the world.
SARAH BUNIN BENOR, is Vice Provost and Professor of Contemporary Jewish Studies at Hebrew Union College - Jewish Institute of Religion (Los Angeles campus) and Adjunct Professor in the University of Southern California Linguistics Department. She received her Ph.D. from Stanford University in Linguistics in 2004. Her books include Becoming Frum: How Newcomers Learn the Language and Culture of Orthodox Judaism (Rutgers, 2012) and Hebrew Infusion: Language and Community at American Jewish Summer Camps (Rutgers, 2020). Dr. Benor co-edits the Journal of Jewish Languages (Brill) and directs the HUC-JIR Jewish Language Project, which features the Jewish Language Website and the Jewish English Lexicon.