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Itche Kadoozy, Orthodox Representations, and the Internet as Community Media by Mind Map: Itche Kadoozy, Orthodox
Representations, and the Internet as
Community Media
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Itche Kadoozy, Orthodox Representations, and the Internet as Community Media

History of Chabad

Founder Rabbi Menachem Mendel Schneerson

Rebbe did not embrace all media technology from the start

Early on stated television programming as "an unparalleleddeparture from Torah morality"

Once argued there can be no such thing as "Kosher television"

Both Schneerson and Chabad as a whole came to embrace media as a way to spread its message

Community

so many members hold so many texts as authoritative and perform so many rituals with regularity, useful to consider chabad as community that exists apart from IKS and is affected by it

hold a very firm grasp on wasy in which symbol, ritual and language shape their sense of togetherness

community can be separated from its surroundings

Popular description is in terms of an idea and approach to teaching Jewish tradition rather than as a community

Outreach efforts

"Chabad Houses"

Chabad.org notes the nearly 4,000 CHabad emissary families, but doesnt mention those in such cities as New York and Jerusalem

heavy financial resource and manpower educating globally dispersed Jews

outreach specialists live dramatically different lives than those they teach

noteworthiness of out reach can serve to obscure community status

Chabad and Media

Stereotype that Chabad members "Scorns popular Media"

as recently as 2002 N'shei Chabad Newsletter published an article describing television programming as "systematic destruction of Judaism and Jewish culture in America"

Internet has had easier time gaining acceptance than television

text only content and value as a work tool may have helped internet acceptance

Much programming created within the Orthodox community, geared toward Orthodox children, fail to resonate with more secular Jewish children.

Community Based Programming

rich site to consider ways in which global media engage with specific localities providing "a site of interpenetration between local and global actors, forces and conditions: one of the many 'heterogeneous dialogues' associated with globalization

Kevin Howley

Stresses peril in attempting to pin down essence of community in one concise definition

Cites Stuart Hall; notion of articulation re theories of personal and communal identity

"community as a unity of differences; a unity forged through symbol, ritual language and discursive practices"

such media are seen as one of may elements that constitute the ever shifitng content of a given community

good example of community media

Self Representation

Landmark in Orthodox Representation

The Itche Kadoozy Show (IKS)

Creation of Itche Kadoozy Show

Online show created by new Chabad member, Rabbi Dovid Taub in 2003

Jonathon Goorvich

Produced in Crown Heights

New found faith and secular television such as Perfect Strangers

Heavily influenced by global culture

plot lines based on pop culture: King Kong, Arrested Development

Employed use of flash animation

Original Show only received 100-300 hits online

Premise of Show

Relationship between intellectual Rabbi and secular 20-something Jono

answer viewer mail

Torah Lessons

Reinforce Jewish values

All Jewish friends

Importance of Mitzvoh (commandments)

Chabad.org Sponsorhip of Show

In 2004 Chabad.org asked to help create a kids site

Chabad.org ased Rabbi Taub to use his flash programming and make "mainstream" show that would appeal beyond Chabad community

Bridge to rest of Jewish world

Chabad realizes they can use "rabbi as an outreach icon"

Itche Kadoozy to follow in the image of the "Dancing Rabbi" ad campaign of the 1970s

Chabad requests change in question and answer: make sure the names of the kids writing in are English names, as to appeal to broader audience beyond Chabad.

working in references to mass culture in an attempt to "pair Jewish concepts with the parts of people's brains that get excited by pop culture"

Chabad.org homepage mostly visited by Chabad children

message board indicates heavy volume of non-Orthodox and Secular audience

IKS and Community Media

preexisting community can produce media that reflect itself while prehaps affecting the community's structure in the process

Itche is of the Chabad community; kipa, beard

Jono is of the secular community

Chabad receives partial funding from outside sources and is aimed at outreach not just community expression

IKS as expression of a distinct community engaging in debate over self repreentation

Underscores that global and local are further apart than scholarly accounts of community media suggest.

does not follow traditional community access model; co produced by chabad member who without chabad.org would not be able to widely disseminate without altering worldview

IKS produced without support was more authentic in approach to community "hebrew names"

Taub's choice to mainstream can ve biewed as movement away from chabad community to influence

Howley attributes intermediary role to community media producers who glean bits and pieces of media culture and invest this material with their own social experience in attempt to make sense of their lives

IKS illustrates ways in which locally produced media can show connections and tensions between community and the world, also draws attention to what elements can be effaced to find wider audience

mediate these extremes illustrate interdependence and give voice to unrepresented minority, IKS counteracts sparse media images of Hasidic Jews- not just martians walking around in little neighborhoods in Brooklyn, countering effacement of the depth of Jewish culture in mass media

merging of global and local, more empahsis on mediating institutions that all0w for global and local to commingle

IKS; intermediary institution is necessary to provide common ground on community and culture.

Media communities

Henry Jenkins 1992 quoting Michel de Certeau: dispel notion that media consumption must be "indifferent" passive process

complex creative and intense reactions by viewers : twin peaks, star trek: fans create communities in a real sense

fan reading is a social process-viewer interaction influence interpretation

media text or event can aid in the formation of a community by virtue of the ways in which individualsl relate to it

assumption that real-life bonds analogous to those of traditional community can be forged through mediated relationships

message boards debate not only plot but the proper way to make meaning out of a chabad text, Example: Jono- his outfit consisted of a flannel shirt, glasses and uncovered head, Message Board Comment: "where is his yarmulka. what kind of example is he???", Pop Culture example: Larry David: uncovered head, Jewishness never questioned, letgitimate concern over whether a show could simultaneously be "jewish" in a Chabad context and also feature Jews with bare heads., Fan discussion has altered the show content- Jono now wears a baseball cap

the social process of media reception and criticism can result in shifting levels of meaning within a viewing community, Chabad members engage in community alongside less observant Jews, mode of storytelling is not religioulsly specific, Jewish Suspense, non violence, debate whether or not inclusion of pop culture images/references detract from Jewishness of media text, torah-oriented stories that appeal to the secular world IKS creates potential for unique community with individuals with vastly different approaches to media can come together and influence one another's perspectives, mixed plot- confusing or genious? like torah- many possible interpretations