Cover image for The big little book of Jewish wit and wisdom
The big little book of Jewish wit and wisdom
Berk, Sally Ann.
Publication Information:
New York, N.Y. : Black Dog & Leventhal Pub., [2000]

Physical Description:
360 pages : color illustrations ; 16 cm
General Note:
Includes Index.
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
PN6231.J5 B47 2000 Adult Non-Fiction Non-Fiction Area

On Order



This small, chunky volume presents the witty, wonderful, deadpan and droll insight of the Jewish culture. Chapters on Wisdom, Mitzvahs, Dybbuks, Proverbs, Jokes, Curses, Conventions, Mores (ethics), Love & Marriage, Men & Women, Children & Family provide reflections gleaned from a wealth of ancient, traditional and modern sources. The range of wise observations on the ways of the world, snappy one-liners, stories and expressions captures the spirit of the Jews throughout the centuries. Illustrated with sixty watercolor paintings, The Big Little Book of Jewish Wit & Wisdom will delight and engage even the toughest Jewish mother.

Some examples:

When we hear a baby laugh, it is the loveliest thing that can happen to us. --Sigmund Freud

A child's wisdom is also wisdom. --Yiddish proverb

I don't believe in the afterlife, although I am bringing a change of underwear. --Woody Allen

May you lose all your teeth but one, and may that one have a cavity. --Anonymous (Yiddish curse)

Author Notes

Sally Ann Berk is the author of The New York Bartender's Guide , Smoothies, Shakes & Frappes , and Farmer's Market Cooking , among others. She is the editor of Secrets of the Druids and A Reasonable Affliction: 1001 Love Poems to Read to Each Other . She lives in Northern California with her husband and son.

Table of Contents

The Life Cyclep. 10
The Getting of Wisdomp. 34
Religion, God and Spiritualityp. 60
Mothersp. 82
Workingp. 96
Men and Womenp. 122
Love and Marriagep. 134
Jews and Non-Jewsp. 154
Jewish Logicp. 166
If We Don't Laugh, We Must Weepp. 176
Familyp. 190
Food and Drinkp. 208
Ethics and Justicep. 224
Blessingsp. 242
Curses and Insultsp. 254
Charity and Communityp. 272
Being Jewishp. 286
Advice and Observationsp. 302
Suggested Readingsp. 354
Indexp. 355