ORAL HISTORY PROJECT

Four of our oral history project’s interviewees.

 Degel Menashe’s oral history project predates Degel Menashe – or more exactly, Degel Menashe grew out of this project, which began in 2017. Thus far, it has involved hundreds of hours of interviewing and recording elderly members of the B’nei Menashe community in Israel who were active in the founding generation of the Judaism movement in northeast India. Many of them were born in small, isolated villages in the jungles of Mizoram and Manipur, in which they or their parents were raised in the old pre-Christian religion of their ancestors; grew up to benefit from the schooling, literacy, and modernization that Christianity and an adherence to it afforded; and made their way from there to Judaism and to Israel. They have in effect lived several lives in one, and our project preserves their remarkable and often inspiring stories.  


Twelve of these interviews, translated into English and edited, will be published by Gaon Books of Santa Fe, New Mexico in a volume to be titled Lives of the Children of Manasia. Excerpts from several of them can be read below.

READ OUR STORIES

Elitsur Haokip

“It comforted me to think that that’s what I was

hearing – the great animal carrying away my father’s soul.”

Kap Joseph

"When I grew older, I realized he was someone important. I remember my father telling me we were Manmasi’s children."

Nemboi Gangte

“I realize that I had been living without knowing God. And yet God loved me so much. If it went on like this, what would become of me?”

Gideon Rei

“There was a spiritual thirst, a yearning for Israel. The word
“Zion” was on everybody’s lips.”

WANT TO SHARE YOUR STORY? CONTACT US TO BE INTERVIEWED.

CONTACT US

Isaac Thangjom, Project Director

degelmenashe@gmail.com

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