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    JEWISH HERITAGE VIDEO COLLECTION
    by 

    Jeff Clark, Director, Media Resources

    Where can you find videotapes that will answer these questions?
    1. What does a Chanukah tune set to rap music sound like?
      (Secret in Bubbie’s Attic, Videotape no. 8120)

    2. What happens when 11 black teenagers from a tough New York City neighborhood spend 10 weeks on an Israeli kibbutz? (Black to the Promised Land, Videotape no. 8011)

    3. Can a Yiddish film satire from the 1920s still make points that are funny and unfamiliar to you?
      (East and West, Videotape no. 8029)

      If you were dropped into the Middle Ages, how would you react to a debate between Christian and Jewish theologians with the purpose of converting Jews? (The Disputation, Videotape no. 8027)


      All of the foregoing questions and films are part of the Media Resources media center’s new Jewish Heritage Video Collection (JHVC). Holding nearly two hundred titles at this time, the JHVC covers every conceivable area of Jewish life, both past and present.It contains feature films (think Woody Allen, Neil Simon and even Dirty Dancing) as well as documentaries that you can rarely find outside of academic institutions--and never at your local Blockbuster. The broad subject categories are: Children’s films, Comedy, Holocaust, International Jewry, Israel, the Jewish Experience in America, and Religion and Identity.

      One of the things that makes this collection so important is the scope of its subject matter. Even viewers who are not Jewish share to some extent a common Judaeo-Christian heritage that has shaped our society and thought. Programs in this collection offer a great opportunity to learn more about a major part of this heritage, and to be entertained while doing so. Another important point is that the JHVC videos aren’t just a gathering of any and every program on their subject: they’ve been carefully selected for their quality and how the titles work together to present a comprehensive picture. In short, the JHVC is a true “collection”, and this makes it more useful for teaching purposes. (There are even print materials for courses designed around the JHVC program titles, which can be found in the media center.)

      The Media Resources media center was able to acquire this collection because it is offered through a matching grant arrangement from the Jewish Media Fund /Charles H. Revson Foundation, which makes the JHVC available for a fraction of its value. For more information on the collection, please follow up the links on the Media Resources homepage at /media/.

      Unlike most items in the media center collections, programs in the Jewish Heritage Video Collection can be checked out both by the JMU community and by members of our local community in the Harrisonburg-Rockingham County area. There are some restrictions regarding how programs can be used in public group viewing situations, but users can consult the media center staff (or the information for each title on Leo) for further information.

      We are now one of only three locations in Virginia that own the JHVC. So we hope everyone who wishes to will take advantage of this unique resource!

      E-mail comments and questions to:
      leidinrm@jmu.edu

      Copyright 2002. JMU Libraries.
      All rights reserved.