Recent Award Winners

Susana&MedalSusana Weich-Shahak

Receiving the Medal for the

Order of Civil Merit

Given by King Philip VI of Spain

for her Research on Judeo-Spanish Music

Published in English by Gaon Books



Moroccan Sephardic Romancero

See below




HaggadahIlan Stavans

The New World Haggadah

Best Religious Book 2016

Art by Gloria Abella Ballen



Hebrew AlphabetGloria Abella Ballen

The Power of the Hebrew Alphabet

Best Religious Book 2014

New Mexico/Arizona Book Awards






Best Book Philosophy/Religion
(New Mexico/Arizona Book Awards)

Zalman Schachter-Shalomi
Netanel Miles-Yepez

A Hidden Light

A Hidden Light is an intimate guided tour of early ChaBaD and Bratzlav Hasidic teaching and storytelling, focusing on the founders of ChaBaD (Shneur Zalman of Liadi, his son, Dov Baer of Lubavitch, and chief disciple, Ahron of Staroshelye) and Bratzlav (Nahman of Bratzlav and his chief disciple, Nosson of Nemirov). In this book, the teachings and tales of these two branches of Hasidic spirituality are richly enhanced by the new insights, interpretations and personal reflections of Rabbi Zalman Schachter-Shalomi, a modern-day Hasidic master and founder of the Jewish Renewal movement, and Netanel Miles-Yepez, a scholar of comparative religion. Readers of their previous book, A Heart Afire: Stories and Teachings of the Early Hasidic Masters will delight in this sequel, covering the next generations of Hasidism; both casual readers of spirituality and serious students of Hasidism will find something of profound depth.

"Reb Zalman continues to astound us with his outpouring of historical memory and profound teachings. He has absorbed the traditions of these two great Hasidic schools and thoughtfully re-shaped them for today’s seekers. There is much to be learned from this book - even for scholars."
-- Arthur Green, Rector of the Hebrew College Rabbinical School. His most recent book Radical Judaism is published by Yale University Press.


RomanceroEuropean Prize for Folklore
Agapito Marazuela

Finalist Best Book/Anthology (New Mexico/Arizona Book Awards)

Susana Weich-Shahak

Moroccan Sephardic Romancero

Has won the European Prize for Folklore named after the Spanish folkorist Agapito Marazuela for her work over the last four decades recording and documenting the Sephardic romancero (Judeo-Spanish ballads). In an interview below that she gave after winning the award, Dr. Weich-Shahak mentioned the role of songs and oral tradition as primary factors in holding together Sephardic identity and heritage even after 500 years of exile in non-Spanish speaking lands from Morocco to Turkey and Israel around the Mediterranean and in the Americas from Argentina to the United States.

Moroccan Sephardic Romancero was published by Gaon Books in 2013.

What others have said about her work and this book.

"For all of us who work on the traditional Romancero—and for all Hispanists whatever their speciality—we need to thank and congratulate Shoshana Weich...for having created and published a splendid book that is invaluable and full of pleasant surprises for the study of one of the most important branches of Spanish poetry: the traditional Romancero." -- Samuel G. Armistead, University of California, Davis

"Susana Weich-Shahak’s anthology of the Moroccan Sephardic Romancero vividly brings to life the Judeo-Spanish ballads transmitted by Moroccan women over the course of time and in scattered locales. Through its careful presentation of more than two hundred songs and details of their transmission
processes, this volume serves both to document a remarkable repertory in great detail and to memorialize the women who sustained these songs. This is a collection that speaks eloquently to the importance of music in Jewish life." -- Kay Kaufman Shelemay, Harvard University


Other Gaon Books
that have been finalists for Best Book Awards:

Ron D. Hart, Sephardic Jews: History, Religion and People

David Kunin, Beyond the Golden Rule

Ruth Sohn, Crossing Cairo

Patricia Gottlieb Shapiro, The Privilege of Aging

Patricia Gottlieb Shapiro, Coming Home to Yourself

Vanessa Paloma, The Mountain, the Desert & the Pomegranate

Isabel Medina Sandoval, Guardians of Hidden Traditions

Rabbi Min Kantrowitz, Counting the Omer

Susan Vorhand, The Mosaic Within



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