June 7, 2022 In conversation with Gerry Albarelli, former Hasidic boys’ English teacher
Gerry Albarelli wrote one of the most unique books on the contemporary Hasidic community. It’s on the subject of his experience as a secular studies teacher in the Satmar Hasidic boys’ school. His book tells the story of how Gerry, as an outsider, navigated the chaos and challenges of teaching Hasidic boys a bit of math and spelling.
Unlike most conversations on Hasidic boys’ education, his book isn’t a commentary on the moral question of the state of Hasidic boys’ education (which is perhaps a conversation for another day!) but simply a reflection filled with lovely insight, humor, and terrific culture clashes. I loved the book when I originally read it and wrote a review on my blog, and now finally got to talk to the author.
In my conversation with Gerry he did a bit of reading from the book and then shared with me his experiences as a teacher, as well as his experiences writing the book. He had a lot of great insight and I hope you’ll have a listen!