World Briefs: Former Federal Reserve chair Ben Bernanke shares Nobel Prize in economics and more


Former Federal Reserve chair Ben Bernanke shares Nobel Prize in economics
Ben Bernanke, the Jewish former chairman of the Federal Reserve, shared the Nobel Prize for Economics with two other scholars for examining how banks function in economic crises.

Ben Bernanke

Bernanke was recognized for a 1983 paper written when he was a professor at Stanford University. It examined the Depression era to show how runs on U.S. banks during economic uncertainty tend to exacerbate and broaden a crisis. His theories helped inform his handling of the 2008 economic crisis and the bailout of major financial institutions.

The other recipients were American scholars Douglas Diamond and Philip Dybvig.

Bernanke, 68, was chairman of the Fed from 2006 to 2014, one of at least five Jewish chairmen of the body. His predecessor Alan Greenspan was Jewish, as was his successor, Janet Yellen.

Early American Jewish novelist gets bridge named for her in Massachusetts town
A Massachusetts town at the center of a high school antisemitism scandal last year has just renamed a bridge in honor of a pioneering but little-known Jewish woman writer who lived there during the 19th century, reported JTA.

Cora Wilburn, whose autobiographical novel “Cosella Wayne” is likely the first novel published in English by a Jewish woman in America, settled in Duxbury, south of Boston, as an adult and lived there until her death at age 82 in 1906.

Some 116 years later, Duxbury has dedicated the Cora Wilburn Bridge in her honor, renaming “Bridge D-14-009(49Q)” in tribute to the trailblazing resident whose novel, and her widely published poetry and essays, left a mark in religious circles across the country from Spiritualism to Judaism.

The town was where a high school football team was revealed to have used the terms “Auschwitz” and “rabbi” as football calls. The coach was fired, and the town commissioned an investigation that found evidence of longstanding antisemitism in the team culture.

German extremist ‘dances’ on Holocaust memorial
A photo on social media showed far-right politician Holger Winterstein posing with his arms spread atop one of the many stone slabs that make up Berlin’s Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe for the 6 million Jews systematically killed by the Nazis, reported JNS.

The photo was taken after a protest organized by Winterstein’s Alternative for Germany (AfD) party on Oct. 8.

AfD said it would take action against the county representative in Thuringia state for his “extremely disrespectful behavior.”

The Israeli ambassador to Berlin, Ron Prosor, condemned Winterstein for his actions at the Holocaust memorial.

— Compiled by Andy Gotlieb

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