Jewish center exhibit features Emma Lazarus

Tuesday, Jan. 3, 2012 3:05 PM
Last updated Wednesday, Jan. 4, 2012 2:24 PM
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Everybody knows those famous lines.

Emma Lazarus  Special
Special
Emma Lazarus

“Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free,” recited Leah Ronen, the executive director of the Augusta Jewish Federation and Community Center.

They are lines from the sonnet The New Colossus, written by Jewish poet Emma Laza­rus, inscribed on a plaque at the base of the Statue of Liberty.

This month, Lazarus is the subject of three weeks’ worth of events to be held at the community center, starting Sunday.

The center was chosen by the American Library Association Public Programs Office as one of 18 sites across the country to hold Emma Lazarus: Voice of Liberty, Voice of Conscience.

The traveling exhibit of the poet’s life and work is presented in partnership with Netbook Inc., a nonprofit dedicated to supporting Jewish literature and art.

People know Lazarus as a poet, but through the exhibit, they’ll also come to see her as an activist, feminist and champion of the poor, refugees and immigrants.

“She worked tirelessly for the rights of immigrants,” Ronen said. “She believed very firmly in liberty and justice for all.”

IF YOU GO

All events are free and take place at the Augusta Jewish Community Center, 898 Weinberger Way, Evans. See augustajcc.org or call (706) 228-3636 to learn more.

Emma Lazarus Exhibit

What: A look at the life of Jewish poet Emma Lazarus

When: Sunday to Jan. 21; 9:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Mondays through Thursdays and 9:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Fridays; large groups should call ahead.

Stories of Immigration & Poetry Contest

What: Community members will share their families’ stories of immigration, and schoolchildren will be recognized for poems they’ve written inspired by Lazarus.

When: 2 p.m. Sunday

Immigration Panel Discussion

What: Panelists will discuss causes and results of immigration, and literary influences on Lazarus.

When: 4 p.m. Jan. 15

One Book, One Community Discussion

What: A discussion of the book Emma Lazarus by Esther Schor

When: 7 p.m. Jan. 17


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