So you've seen "Big Fish," "Forrest Gump" and "Driving Miss Daisy," and now you think you know what the South is all about -- old mansions, moss-draped oaks, steamy swamps. Think again.
The South is a vibrant tapestry of culture, and its Jewish communities are important threads. Atlanta, Miami and Nashville are thriving tourism destinations, but Charleston, S.C., featuring luxuriant gardens, long porches and rocking chairs filled with laughing guests sipping sweet tea, is also flush with Jewish history that dates back to the 17th century.
For more than 25 years, Shofet worked alongside his father, Hacham Yedidia Shofet, the community's longtime spiritual leader, who died last summer.
What surprised Warner Shook was the play's reference to Jewish bigotry: "I had known nothing about the conflict between German and Eastern European Jews," he said. Shook was so fascinated he decided to direct the piece; to learn more, he read books on Jewish Atlanta and watched documentaries such as "Delta Jews," narrated by Uhry.
TV writer Loraine Despres dreamed up her award-winning debut novel, "The Scandalous Summer of Sissy LeBlanc," (William Morrow, $24) after a creative writing class stirred her memories of growing up Jewish in Amite, La.
It's hard to feel sorry for the Walt Disney Company, a multi billion-dollar mouse-forged empire that seems to own a part of most children's hearts, including that of my own 2 1/2-year-old. Yet, in recent weeks, the venerable Burbank entertainment giant has been subjected to two major boycotts, one from the right-leaning Southern Baptists and the other from Latino media activists.