At 100, Still a Teacher, and Quite a Character

Sholem Aleichem was a successful storyteller and instrumental to the storyline of Fiddler on the Roof, but perhaps his biggest success was instilling an enduring sense of humor in his granddaughter Bel Kaufman. Ms. Kaufman's humor has sustained her through 100 years, the first 12 of which were spent in revolution-torn Russia. A graduate of Hunter College and Columbia University, she honored her grandfather's humor with the best-selling novel Up the Down Staircase. Now happily married to a 94-year-old and with two retired children, Ms. Kaufman wonders at reaching the century mark. "It must have happened gradually, while I wasn’t looking," joked the new adjunct professor of Jewish humor at Hunter College.
The New York Times, May 11, 2011

Written By: Joseph Berger

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