Nina Boug Lichtenstein is a writer, teacher, blogger and public speaker. A native of Oslo, Norway, she received her PhD in French literature from the University of Connecticut, where she currently teaches literature and writing. She is also a Research Associate at the Hadassah Brandeis Institute at Brandeis University. She has recently translated a novel to English by Jewish French-Tunisian writer Chochana Boukhobza forthcoming in 2015, and her research interests and publications concern literature and film by and about Francophone Jewish women from North Africa, Sephardi Jews and the Holocaust, and Jews from Islamic Lands in general.
You can find her more curiously inspired writing on her blog TheVikingJewess.com
Our attempt to map out the trajectory of the forgotten Sephardic narratives
of North Africa, as well as our venture to understand the reasons why and how memories
and voices of these entire communities have been marginalized or even erased in both postcolonial and contemporary discourses on displaced and exiled peoples, has been a relatively wide-ranging inquiry encompassing a broad spectrum of concerns relating to this often minimized chapter of Jewish history. These issues, historical, cultural and somewhat literary in nature, have enabled us to gain an informative perspective in the
arena of “global” studies on silenced and marginalized minorities. As this study hopes to illustrate, the Judeo-Maghrebian communities do not in any way present a homogenous
group of Jews who all had the same experiences during their centuries of life as dhimmi
or for the duration of the colonial experience. Nevertheless, whether as individuals, families, neighborhoods or towns, religious or secular, they identified with a profound sense of Jewish North African belonging, which is always discernable among the testimonies, memoirs and narratives recovered.
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