TV show crowns best Jewish mom - Israel Culture, Ynetnews
 
ynetnews
web


   Israel News

Israel News
World News
Israel Opinion
Jewish
Israel Business
Israel Culture
Israel Travel
Oh, Mama

One of show's tasks: Preparing Shabbat dinner Photo: CD Bank
One of show's tasks: Preparing Shabbat dinner Photo: CD Bank
 
 

TV show crowns best Jewish mom

'I am a tough, surviving Jewish mother,' Sandi Firth tells Yedioth Ahronoth after beating seven other women in British reality show

Yaniv Halily
Published: 11.04.12, 13:20 / Israel Culture

LONDON – Britain's Jewish community has been in an uproar in the past month, and this time it has nothing to do with local politics or kashrut issues – but rather with a television reality show.

 

As part of Channel 4's "Jewish Mum of the Year," eight Jewish mothers "fought it out" through a series of tasks, including throwing a bar mitzvah celebration, preparing a traditional Shabbat Kiddush and playing matchmaker. Two moms were dismissed at the end of each episode.

 

Yiddishe Mama
New course: How to get along with your mother-in-law / Yedida Peretz
As part of Jerusalem neighborhood's community activities, workshop offered to teach mothers and their sons' wives to be friendly towards each other
Full story

In the last episode, aired Wednesday, the "Jewish Mum of the Year" went to Sandi Firth, 65, of Leads, described by the show's producers as "a glamorous twice divorced granny."

 

The day after she was crowned, Firth's phone wouldn't stop ringing. "Oy vey," she told Yedioth Ahronoth. "I'm exhausted after a sleepless night. It was a long and tiresome process, which ended with a sweet victory."

 

Firth, a marketing consultant, has two children and four grandchildren. She was declared the winner after preparing, cooking and hosting a five-course Friday night dinner for family, friends and surprise guests as part of the show's final task.

 

'Negative stereotypes perpetuated'

Hundreds of thousands of British viewers followed the program, which provided a glimpse into Jewish customs. The show's producers, who thought the country's Jews would be thrilled with such a prime-time series, did not foresee the community leaders' fury.

 

"The program perpetuates negative stereotypes," a community source said. "It's a disgrace for Jews."

 

The harsh dispute made it to the first pages of the country's leading newspapers: Articles in favor and against the program were published in recent weeks, and the reality show's critics claimed that it presented Jews as living in a ghetto.

 

An example for the stereotypes perpetuated on the show, said one of the critics, is the inclusion of Jewish Professor Dovid Katz, who has a thick beard and side-locks, on the judging panel.

 

Others argued that that the mothers were portrayed as obedient housewives, whose mere duty is to prepare a Shabbat meal and raise children.

Britain's Jewish parliament members voiced their support or criticism of the show as well.

 

"I auditioned for the show with 400 other Jewish women from all over the United Kingdom. I wanted to be part of a 'Jewish' television program, which would make the entire community proud," said Firth. "Only after watching the show's episodes, I realized that it had a very unpleasant competitive nature."

 

Alongside the enthusiastic reactions, Firth said her appearance on the show also generated quite a few angry responses from Jewish community members.

 

"You can't create a program which will be loved by 100% of the viewers," she said. "My parents arrived in Britain on the eve of World War II. I am the second generation of survivors and I raised my two children as a single mother after getting divorced. I'm not just a Jewish mother – I'm a tough, surviving Jewish mother. But all Jewish mothers are like that, aren’t they?"

 

 

commentcomment   PrintPrint  Send to friendSend to friend   
Tag with Del.icio.us Bookmark to del.icio.us



 
14 Talkbacks for this article    See all talkbacks
Please wait for the talkbacks to load

 

RSS RSS | About | Contact Us | Privacy Policy | Terms of use | Advertise with us | Site Map

Site developed by  YIT Advanced Technology Solutions

 
פיקוד העורף התרעה במרחב:
    רשימת יישובים במרחב