IAJGS 2014, day 1


Official opening of the conference

Day one is over. For me it’s the first genealogical and not academic conference. The latter ones are usually very formal, no one leaves during the lectures, no one comes in late. Those who do, are considered as outlaws. People here doesn’t care so much. Doors slam every five minutes even though though on each of them there is manual saying “do not slam the door”. But all listen and ask a lot of questions what is not always the case at the universities. Here a few hundreds of people socialize; you can be a true member of the conference without attending any lecture. Conference members have their own world. When they ask “what is your shtetl”, they mean “in what town did your ancestors live”. “How far did you go in you research” means “from what date comes the earliest document regarding your family”.
Some ask me whether Ukrainian is a separate language or just a dialect of Russian. Almost everyone use Russian or Polish place names. But when asked, everyone express true support for Ukraine in current conflict.
Shetl 3.0. Good to be here.

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July 28, 2014