Monday, October 24, 2005

Hot New Trend: The Faux Mitzvah

NEW YORK (Wireless Flash - FlashNews) – These days, you don’t have to be Jewish to have something like a Bar Mitzvah.

In fact, a growing number of non-Jewish adults are holding “faux mitzvahs” to honor their own passage into adulthood.

The term was coined by Roger Bennett, one of the co-authors of Bar Mitzvah Disco (Crown), a collection of photos and essays depicting bar and bat mitzvah ceremonies from the 1970s and 1980s.

Bennett says the trend towards “faux mitzvahs” started 30 years ago when Bar and Bat Mitzvahs changed from, as he puts it, “a religious and conceptual slight-of-hand where an awkward 13-year-old arbitrarily becomes a full-fledged man and woman” to secular celebrations dedicated to themes like Star Wars, The Beatles or Playstation 2.

He says non-religious “faux mitzvahs” can be celebrated at any age, not just 13.

As he puts it, “This is the first generation where Bar Mitzvahs aren’t just for Jews.”

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