Tiffany Haddish Becomes a Bat Mitzvah

December 3, 2019

Tiffany Haddish tells jokes to audience members during a performance at Incirlik Air Base. Wikimedia Commons.

by

Katy Ronkin

On December 3rd, 2019, actress and comedian Tiffany Haddish became a bat mitzvah on her 40th birthday. On the same day, Haddish released her comedy special entitled Black Mitzvah on Netflix, in which she talks about discovering her Jewish identity at age twenty-seven after reconnecting with her estranged father, an Eritrean Jew, and learning about the persecution he faced. At her bat mitzvah, Haddish read from the Torah and gave a Dvar Torah on the story of Jacob’s Ladder. She related Jacob’s discovery that G-d had been with him all along to the realization that whether she knew it or not, she had always been Jewish. Rabbi Susan Silverman, Sarah Silverman’s sister, led the service, and her daughter, Aliza Silverman, tutored Haddish in the months leading up to the ceremony. Later that day, Haddish threw a lavish, star-studded party to celebrate her achievement. 

In response to the event, many Black Jews wrote about their excitement seeing such a high profile Black Jew celebrated by the community. Haddish touches upon the difficulties of navigating Jewish spaces as a person of color in her special saying, “Judaism, I love it, but you have to know Hebrew, I’ve been to like over 500 bar mitzvahs, and I’m tired of people telling me to go to the kitchen. No, motherfucker, I’m supposed to be here!” In response to those who question her, Haddish says, “I have no problem saying: This is where I’m supposed to be.”

Sources

Brown, Aviva L. "As a Black Jewish Mom, Tiffany Haddish's Bat Mitzvah Is Deeply Inspiring." Kveller. Last modified December 9, 2019. Accessed October 27, 2020; Brown, Hannah. "Actress Tiffany Haddish Celebrates Her Judaism in Lavish 'Black Mitzvah.'" The Jerusalem Post. Last modified December 5, 2019. Accessed October 27, 2020; Burack, Emily. "All the Details (and Photos!) from Tiffany Haddish's Bat Mitzvah." Alma. Last modified December 4, 2019. Accessed October 27, 2020; "Tiffany Haddish Loves Being Jewish. We Talked to Her About It." Alma. Last modified November 22, 2019. Accessed October 27, 2020; Kuruvilla, Carol. "Tiffany Haddish Embraces Her Jewish Identity with a Bat Mitzvah Ceremony." HuffPost. Last modified December 6, 2019. Accessed October 27, 2020; Pierce, Rebecca. "Tiffany Haddish's Bat Mitzvah Is a Powerful Affirmation for Black Jews." Alma. Last modified December 5, 2019. Accessed October 27, 2020.

1 Comment

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Thanks for sharing such a pleasant thought, paragraph
is good, thats why i have read it entirely betflix

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Jewish Women's Archive. "Tiffany Haddish Becomes a Bat Mitzvah." (Viewed on May 19, 2024) <http://jwa.org/thisweek/tiffany-haddish-becomes-bat-mitzvah>.