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New York Poetry Festival
Sunday, July 31


German-born photographer and writer Julian Voloj explores aspects of identity and heritage in his work. His critically acclaimed graphic novel "Ghetto Brother" (with artist Claudia Ahlering) tells the story of Benjamin Melendez, the founder of the notorious "Ghetto Brothers," a South Bronx gang who initiated an iconic 1971 gang truce. In the aftermath of this peace meeting, a new culture later known as hip hop emerged in the region, while Melendez discovered and reclaimed his Jewish roots. At Art Kibbutz the author is a Bechol Lashon fellow and will be in conversation on July 31st with Melendez about his upbringing in the Bronx, New York's gang culture, conflict resolution and Jewish identity.

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