S4 Ep 4: In the Same Place, As the Same Person

Episode 45 · September 10th, 2021 · 33 mins 10 secs

About this Episode

Amanda Mbuvi, Ph.D., is the Reconstructionist Rabbinical College’s new vice president for academic affairs. Mbuvi, a Hebrew Bible scholar and nonprofit leader, is the first Jew of Color to hold such a leadership position at an American rabbinical seminary. We delve into Mbuvi’s desire to deepen how people and communities think about diversity and identity. Mbuvi shares her enthusiasm for using the Bible in general, and Genesis and Exodus in particular to explore questions related to community and identity. Mbuvi and Lawson talk what it means to be women of color and leaders in the Jewish community, reacting to the findings of the Jews of Color Initiative's latest study, “Beyond the Count: Perspectives and Lived Experiences of Jews of Color.” (Eight in 10 respondents said they have experienced discrimination in a Jewish setting.) “So I think for a lot of people, when they say Jew of Color, they think about it like a child with divorced parents: on the weekends, you're Jewish and then during the week you're Black. It's like, you sort of go from one to the other, but not that you were both at the same time, in the same place as the same person. I think that's just something people have had a lot of difficulty getting their minds around,” Mbuvi says. The episode was recorded the week before Rosh Hashanah and Lawson, Mbuvi and Waxman share their hopes for the High Holidays and the coming year.

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