Program Details

Four Different Jewish Diaspora Communities: Iraq, India, Greece and France

Helene Herman
Video Catch-up

Course Description

Broaden your knowledge of the Jewish Diaspora with Helene Herman as we continue to explore the history and contemporary culture of four distinct global Jewish communities. Three can be traced to antiquity; all have stories of expulsion, terror, and refuge, and all are connected in the continuing saga of the Jewish Diaspora. Iraqi Jews comprise one of the world's oldest and most historically significant Jewish communities, with roots going back to Genesis. Indian Jews have lived there since ancient times, claiming ancestry to the Kingdom of Judah and the Israelite Tribe of Manasseh. Greek Jews can be traced back to at least the 4th century BCE. Finally, the Jewish French community began in the Early Middle Ages, when France became a center of Jewish learning. 


  1. Iraq: From Babylonia and Bagdad to Banishment
  2. India: Lost Tribes and Found Communities
  3. Greece: Romaniotes, Sephardim, and Survivors
  4. France: Home to the World's Third Largest Jewish Population

About the Instructor

  • Helene Herman retired as President of a 400-member lifelong learning club in Florida that evolved from Brandeis Women. She lectures on a variety of historical and cultural topics. Herman has more than 30 years of executive-level experience in global marketing for a variety of American manufacturers in diverse product areas. She earned a bachelor's degree in anthropology from NYU; her background in cultural anthropology was instrumental in putting her on the path to her marketing career and her career as a Lifelong Learning lecturer.