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The return of Jewish Book Month at the Jewish Public Library!

Courtesy of the Jewish Public Library

Jewish Book Month 2021 (not just books!) Tuesday, Oct. 26 -Tuesday, Nov. 30, various dates and times Livestreamed from cities around the world

The Jewish Public Library (JPL) is pleased to announce the return of its annual Jewish Book Month (JBM), from October 26th to November 30th. Far from being only about books, this entertaining and thought-provoking series of eleven multilingual, eclectic events bring together some of today’s top literary minds in interviews and inspiring lectures, along with the film, workshops, concerts, and Russian dance & culture. Insightful Q&A sessions follow most presentations.

These one-time live-streamed events take place in various cities around the world, with the option of attending the Russian performance in person. Highlights include this year’s keynote speakers David Grossman, Colum McCann, Steven Pinker, and Valérie Zenatti. Certain events are available in French. Jewish Book Month is celebrated every November, honoring works that contain Jewish content first started at the Boston Public Library in 1925; JPL sponsored the first comprehensive book exhibit in the Montreal Jewish community in 1944.

For Eddie Paul, JPL’s Senior Director of Library & Learning Services, Jewish Book Month is about the resilience of the book and the exchange of ideas in which books hold sway,

“JBM is first and foremost a month in which writers and ideas from all reaches of the human experience converge,”
“The events confer special importance on the current zeitgeist because of their diversity, their scope and their willingness to invite open discussion; the life blood of the Jewish Public Library."
-Eddie Paul

This year’s award-winning line-up reflects the polyglot character of JPL's institutional history and identity.

Continue below for a list of upcoming keynote presentations:

November 14th: Live from France, Valerie Zenatti is a Francophone author grounded in the European and Middle Eastern romantic traditions in conversation with Chantal Ringuet.

November 17th: From Massachusetts, Steven Pinker continues his exploration on the genealogy of reason with insight and humor in this Montreal launch of his new work, Rationality.

McCann is honored to be part of JPL’s Jewish Book Month, of ideas in which books hold sway,

“I like people who like books; they are smart and adventurous and generally have something to talk about,”
“The conflict is not an easy place into which we step. The message of Rami and Bassam, the two central figures of my novel— that we do not need to love each other, or even like each other, but we must understand one another—is something that can be applied universally.”
-Colum McCann

On November 13th, the 16th annual Evening of Russian Culture- Our Hearts Are Holding Hands starring poets, musicians, vocalists, and dancers bringing famous Russian bard Bulat Okudzhava to life, in English and Russian. Tickets are available to watch live in person at the Segal Centre or live-streamed.

November 24th: Rare book workshop, Missing Inks: Jewish Texts in Controversial Contexts with librarians Nicole Beaudry, Eddie Stone, and Eddie Paul featuring volumes from JPL's oldest collection dating back to 1481, focusing on texts whose backstories were controversial and fraught with intrigue.

November 30th: Chanie Ehrentreu, the host of The Boss Maidel Podcast, is in conversation with author Fiona Davis in the new series, Boss Maidel Conversations with Female Writers from California and New York.

After Jewish book month on December 12th, Sephardi Cantor Daniel Benlolo performs the concert, A Glimmer of Light. A tribute to Jewish composers showcasing songs from artists including Leonard Cohen, Neil Diamond, Samy Elmaghribi, Billy Joel, Carole King, Enrico Macias, Simon and Garfunkel, and Theodore Bikel.

The Jewish Public Library remains unique among Montreal’s and the world’s Jewish institutions. Open to all, the library, including archives and children’s library, is a hub for Jewish culture, lifelong learning, literature, and cultural programming, cultivating imagination, and promoting literacy, dialogue, and creativity. Jewish Book Month is just one of their ongoing, year-round activities.

Jewish Public Library’s Jewish Book Month, October 26 – November 30, 2021, Complete program, dates, tickets: Jewish Book Month Tickets: FREE-$18 depending on the event.

For further information: (514) 345-2627 or


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