Main Informed Judaism Discussion

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08:10:37 PM Oct 27th 2015
There's a sentence in the House example that makes no sense:
  • In the case of Cuddy, this follows the actor; Robert Sean Leonard does not appear to have any Jewish background.
Leonard does not play Cuddy; Cuddy is The Danza (played by Lisa Edelstein). RSL plays the Australian whose name escapes me right now.
02:20:14 AM Oct 28th 2015
RSL plays Wilson, Jesse Spencer plays Chase
05:31:51 PM Jul 29th 2014
There are several examples that go against this trope; wouldn't a person who keeps Kosher and wears a star of David be more subtle? And wouldn't them using some stereotypical Jewish slang also be subtle?

Informed would be this: "Christman? But I'm Jewish!"

Subtle would be the examples I just listed, which are among the examples of the trope. Someone should do a clean-up of that.
09:50:33 PM May 8th 2011
Why is this a trope? We don't have an "Informed Christianity", or "Informed Islam", or "Informed Hinduism", or "Informed Any Other Religion." It just seems like there is a Double Standard at work here— but correct me if I'm wrong.
11:55:11 PM Jul 26th 2011
Yeah. I mean, most people (and characters) are only noticeably Christian around Christmas. Sure, there are also other holidays like Easter, and if a Jewish character celebrates that along with them, this trope has a point, but the point still stands.
10:06:47 PM Nov 13th 2011
Its probably just those are much rarer in american viewed fiction, there are few enough Islamic and Hindu characters coming out of America that if one shows up they probably say it just to make a point.
03:03:07 PM Nov 22nd 2010
For that matter: where do we draw the line? Going through the example, I find there are several listed because "they wear a Star of David". Doesn't that go against the idea of the trope?
08:33:31 AM Sep 26th 2010
edited by IntuitionJo
I may be Completely Missing the Point here, but the way this trope seems to be structured comes across that Jewish characters are to act in a certain way, different than other people, and have to show the fact that their Jewish beyond certain holidays and basic behaviors (such as aversion to pork). I find this a bit discomforting as it appears to actually be FORCING stereotypes.

So what if a character offhandedly mentions that they are Jewish at a Christmas party? As a Reconstructionist Jew myself, that would be the exact length to which I would discuss it, unless someone makes a conversation out of it. This may only be because I come from a melting-pot society, but people generally interact in non-religiously-affiliated ways during their day-to-day. If a character didn't do anything stereotypically Jewish during the big Space Battle, then I don't see anything wrong with that. Even if a character's family is met, and the only thing remotely indicative are mezuzah on the doorframes, I see no problem with that.

I would just like an explanation of the trope, because at the moment I find it rather offensive.
08:53:33 PM Oct 2nd 2010
edited by Scifantasy
Speaking as one who had to clean up the trope once (and it may be due for a cleanup again), the idea was to describe characters who feel like they're only Jewish so the show's creators can have at least one character who isn't Christian. So they make a character just Jewish enough to be recognizable to the Lowest Common Denominator, slap in ham-handed references (usually during a Christmas Episode), and completely ignore any fine detail.

It's not "this character fails to do something stereotypically Jewish," it's "the only time there's any reference to or acknowledgement of the character's Judaism is when it's accompanied by neon signs and occasionally anvils." Hell, a mezuzah would be solid evidence against Informed Judaism, because that's the kind of background detail that so rarely shows up.

Like I said, a good example I use is Willow Rosenberg.
02:58:38 PM Nov 22nd 2010
edited by Runespoor7
I've never been convinced about Willow. She doesn't mention it just once; she basically mentions it every time she finds herself involved with Christianism - Bt VS being Bt VS, that's not often.

There's also her putting the rock on top of Tara's headstone. That's a background detail that isn't commented upon.
11:38:36 AM Nov 23rd 2010
That's just it—she only seems to be Jewish when Christianity is discussed. Never on her own terms.

With that one exception, the headstone rock, that I specifically mentioned.
04:09:17 PM Sep 20th 2010
Mark from RENT may not be religious, but to this New York Jewish troper (and recall that Broadway is heavily inhabited by New York Jews, including Jonathan Larson himself) he's very clearly Jewish. Evidence:

That Mark knows "O Little Town of Bethlehem" is hardly evidence; Jews tend to know more Christian songs, especially holiday songs, especially Christmas songs (which are nonstop at least in December, if not November and October as well), than Christians know Jewish songs.

So, yeah. Not Informed. Just not religious.
10:34:12 AM Aug 20th 2010
Where do we put examples of people who fit this trope but are some other non-Jewish and non-Christian religion (Hindu, Muslim, Buddisht, Satanist, etc.)
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