Gabrielle Birkner

Gabrielle Birkner

senior editor, @70facesmedia; co-founder @modernloss; mom of 2; @northwesternu alum; writing book for @harpercollins; can't get into yoga.

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Bagels and locks article
The Jewish Daily Forward

At a KinkyJews Seder, Pharoah Isn’t the Only One With the Whip

Forget the bitter herbs. When about 100 Jews gather in Brooklyn on April 5 for a pre-Passover Seder, they will pay homage to their enslaved ancestors not with the traditional sinus-clearing horseradish, but by spanking each other with wands of chocolate licorice.

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The Jewish Daily Forward

Falling Through the Cracks of Genetic Screening –

Tay-Sachs is the best-known "Jewish" disease. But today, the vast majority of babies born with Tay-Sachs are not Jewish. Should we be pushing for a more universal genetic testing environment?

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The Jewish Daily Forward

At BYU Seder, Mormons Dip, Eat, Sing Their Own ‘Dayenu’

Seders have become a tradition at BYU, where nearly 99% of its 33,000 students identify as Mormon, and where, according to a university spokeswoman, there are only three Jewish students.

William after passing article
The Jewish Daily Forward

Online Video Network Offers Parents New Views, Advice on Grief –

The Courageous Parents Network is a new, video-centric resource site for parents whose children have received a terminal diagnosis of any kind.

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The Jewish Daily Forward

Aging Wisely, Together

Wise Aging, a new program from the Institute for Jewish Spirituality, isn’t about keeping seniors busy with cultural activities or continuing education. Instead, it’s about doing reflective work and preparing oneself for late life, when there is greater frailty and greater loss.

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The Jewish Daily Forward

Haiti's Jewish Remnant Keeps the Faith Amid the Crisis

Each year on Yom Kippur, Rudolph Dana locks himself in his Pétionville, Haiti, home — protected by guard dogs and security personnel — and passes the Day of Atonement fasting, praying and reciting the traditional liturgy of repentance and forgiveness.

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The Jewish Daily Forward

New Gallaudet President Bridges Deaf, Jewish Worlds

Jews have a reputation for talking with their hands. For most of them, it’s a matter of emphasis; for veteran educator T. Alan Hurwitz, it’s more basic. American Sign Language is his mameloshn.

Images article
The Jewish Daily Forward

Tracing a Tattoo Dynasty Back to Its Bowery Days

At 48, Marvin is the youngest member of a celebrated New York tattoo dynasty. Sixty years ago, Marvin’s late grandfather, Willie Moskowitz — a Yiddish-speaking immigrant who moved to the Lower East Side from Russia in 1918 — opened a small tattoo parlor in the basement of his Bowery barbershop.

Cocochanel 100109 article
The Jewish Daily Forward

Co Co: Couturier, Collaborator

What is nowhere to be found in "Coco Before Chanel" is a single reference to Chanel’s collaborationist activities during the German occupation of Paris.

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The Jewish Daily Forward

Why Nobody Pays the 'Nanny Tax'

How much do you have to earn to pay your nanny a net $30,000 on the books? The answer may surprise you.

Tallying losses 122308 article
The Jewish Daily Forward

After Madoff, Tallying the Jewish Communal Losses – The Forward

In the week since Bernard Madoff was arrested and accused of running one of the largest Ponzi schemes in history, hundreds of millions of dollars in losses to Jewish foundations and social service organizations have been totaled; two charities that backed mostly Jewish and Israeli causes have been shuttered.

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The Jewish Daily Forward

Video: The Triangle Fire — A Working Legacy

Watch a video tour of where the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory Fire took place 100 years ago. Chris Connor, a retired New York City fire marshal, discusses what went wrong on March 25, 1911, and the enduring legacy of the deadly fire.

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The Jewish Daily Forward

Britain's Jewish Press Baroness

In an era when women were not permitted to vote, when marriage was the only vocation that proper girls were encouraged to pursue, when doctors linked too much “brain work” to nervous disorders and infertility in women, Rachel Beer challenged Victorian conventions of womanhood. As the editor of two influential British broadsheets, The Sunday Times and The Observer, it was her perpetually ink-stained hands that produced some of the most incisive editorials of the late 19th century.

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The Jewish Daily Forward

Video: Paul Rudd Was My Bat Mitzvah DJ

Before Paul Rudd broke into television and movies, the “Dinner for Schmucks” star was working the bar and bat mitzvah circuit in L.A.’s San Fernando Valley. He emceed my bat mitzvah party, back in 1992 — months before landing a recurring role on the NBC drama “Sisters.” (“Clueless” was still a few years off.)

Project mah jongg article
The Jewish Daily Forward

Video: Melissa Martens on 'Project Mah Jongg' and the History of the Game

How did the popular Chinese tile game mah jongg become a favorite pastime — often, a social lifeline — for generations of Jewish women in America? Melissa Martens, senior curator of exhibitions at the Museum of Jewish Heritage — A Living Memorial to the Holocaust, recently sat down in the Forward studio with Sisterhood contributor Elissa Strauss to discusses the game’s history, its rituals, and its 21st-century following.