Daughter of Vilna: The Life in Song of Masha Roskies. Seeing It Through the Eyes of a Lithuanian Audience

20 10 2023

On 10-11 October, the Lithuanian Academy of Sciences hosted an international conference ‘The Intellectual Heritage of the Jews of Vilnius’, jointly organised by the Lithuanian Academy of Sciences and the Israel Academy of Sciences and Humanities. Unfortunately, due to the tragic events in Israel, most of the speakers from that country were unable to attend and participated remotely.

On 10 October, the afternoon programme took place at the Vilna Gaon Museum of Jewish History, where the film Daughter of Vilna: The Life in Song of Masha Roskies was screened for the first time in Lithuania. The film was created by David G. Roskies, Ruth Wisse, and Joshua R. Waletzky (1999, latest version 2023). It is a film about the fate of Masha Roskies from Vilnius, the mother of Prof. David G. Roskies, Sol and Evelyn Henkind Chair in Yiddish Literature and Culture and professor emeritus of Jewish literature at the Jewish Theological Seminary of America, one of the keynote speakers at the conference.

After the screening of the film, Prof. Roskies admitted that it was ‘not only an overwhelming emotional experience. It was also the first time that I “saw” it through the eyes of a Lithuanian audience, who never experiences Jewish Vilna first hand’.

From Prof. D. G. Roskies’ letter to the Lithuanian Academy of Sciences:

‘I hereby grant permission to upload the film Daughter of Vilna: The Life in Song of Masha Roskies to the YouTube channel of the Lithuanian Academy of Sciences. I consider it an honour and privilege.

You will find the film here:

Information of the Division of the Humanities and Social Sciences
Translated by Diana Barnard