Try digitalPLUS for 10 days for only $0.99
Topics

Sidwell Friends School

Telling tales as an art form, and to preserve a precious heritage

Telling tales as an art form, and to preserve a precious heritage

As a 5-year-old sitting on his great-grandmother's knee in the 1950s in Philadelphia, Marc Young listened patiently as she whispered in broken English the same two sentences she would come to repeat in a weekly ritual for years. "God gave the Ten Commandments to Moses on Mount Sinai. Ever since, the Jews are a special people to God," Grandma Rose would tell him in her thick Ukrainian accent while gently rubbing his forearm with hands gnarled by years of menial labor. "She wasn't so much stroking my arm as she was trying to grind her message into my chromosomes," recalled Young, a longtime Columbia resident who is now 62. The outcome of her wish —...

Loading

79°