Talks & workshops


“How the Next U.S. President Should Handle the Middle East.” With retired Sen. George Mitchell of Maine, a former special envoy for Middle East peace, and Alon Sachar, a former adviser to Mitchell and to the U.S. ambassador to Israel, Daniel Shapiro. At Commonwealth Club, 555 Post St., S.F. 12 p.m. $5-$7, members free.

“Listening After the Election.” Gathering to share impressions and feelings on the recent election, led by Rabbi Bridget Wynne. Shabbat and dinner follow. North Berkeley location given upon RSVP. 6:30 p.m. Free. [email protected]

“Hanukkah FRYdays.” Weekly program in December welcomes Lex Gopnik-Lewinski of Augie’s Montreal Smoke Meat pop-up. Featuring rye-and-smoke-meat latkes and discussion of food traditions. At JCCSF, 3200 California St. 3 p.m. Free.


“Leonard Cohen: A Secret Chord.” Discussion of the late musician’s integration of Jewish themes and biblical imagery into his work. With Tova Birnbaum and Tzippi Zach. At OFJCC, 3921 Fabian Way, Palo Alto. 7:30 p.m. $10-$12.


“Sikhism and Judaism: Separated at Birth?” Ken Blady, historian, and Amrik Singh Pannu, an India native and Sikh teacher, compare and contrast two ancient faiths. Co-sponsored by Lehrhaus Judaica. At Temple Sinai, 2808 Summit St., Oakland. 9:30 a.m. Free.


“Demographic Shifts in the Jewish World: Forecasts and Implications.” Talk by Hebrew U. professor emeritus Sergio Della Pergola, one of the world’s leading authorities on Jewish demographics. Part of Under One Tent book/arts fest. At Congregation B’nai Shalom, 74 Eckley Lane, Walnut Creek. 7:30 p.m. $10.

“A New Political Reality.” Haaretz senior editor Bradley Burston discusses what the recent election means for American relations with Israel with Jennifer Gorovitz of the New Israel Fund. At JCCSF, 3200 California St. 7 p.m. Free, but RSVP required.


“Melting Pots Compared: Italian Jewry and Contemporary Israel.” Italian-born Hebrew U. professor emeritus Sergio Della Pergola examines similarities and differences. Reception follows. At the Magnes, 2121 Allston Way, Berkeley. 5 p.m. Free.


“Very Veggie Latkes.” Cooking Round the World class on non-potato-based latke recipes. At JCCSF, 3200 California St., S.F. 7 p.m. $55-$60.

Mega Challah Bake. Jewish women and girls 12-and-up come together to make challah. With chef Sara Briman of Mexico, winner of an international challah contest. Part of Under One Tent book/arts fest. At Chabad of Contra Costa, 1671 Newell Ave., Walnut Creek. 7 p.m. $18.

“Trump and Israel.” Haaretz senior editor Bradley Burston will analyze Trump’s statements on Israel and give his own perspective. Sponsored by J Street. At Book Passage, 51 Tamal Vista Blvd, Corte Madera. 7 p.m. Free.


“Israel’s Environmental Challenges and the Relevance of Jewish Teachings.” Presentation by Rabbi Yonatan Neril, founder of the Interfaith Center for Sustainable Development. Includes Israeli appetizer buffet. At Congregation Beth Sholom, 301 14th Ave., S.F. 3 p.m. $10.


“Food for Thought: Spinoza and Me: Are We Heretics?” Rabbi Ari Cartun, Lehrhaus Judaica teacher and Etz Chaim rabbi emeritus, leads a seminar on the philosophy of Spinoza and the place of secular Judaism today. At PJCC, 800 Foster City Blvd., Foster City. 2 p.m. $4.