When we speak about interfaith marriage in North America, we tend to focus on the marriages between Christians and Jews, because that is the overwhelming majority of cases (whether or not those Christians still practice). At the same time, I recognize that there are a growing number of interfaith marriages that take place between Jews and those of religious backgrounds other than Christianity. The recent release on DVD of Torn Apart reminded me that such interfaith marriages take place between Muslims and Jews in the U.S. and elsewhere (particularly in Israel), even if few people are talking about it.
This film was originally released in 1989 (and on video in 1990) and is based on the 1983 book by Chayym Zeldis called A Forbidden Love. Both the book and movie have been described as a West Bank Romeo and Juliet story. The release on DVD provides us with an opportunity to program formally in our institutions and reach out to the Muslim community. But real understanding is not built between institutions; it is built between people. So why not invite a few people into your home, show it, and discuss its impact on both communities.
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