Host a movie screening or book club

Movies and books are a wonderful way to educate others about the effects of factory farming on our environment, health, and the animals. We have an extensive and compelling collection of media that encourages others to lead a Jewish life full of compassion and righteousness.

Movies

A Sacred Duty was written and produced by Richard Schwartz, President Emeritus of JVNA.

"From the Warsaw Ghetto to a Life of Compassion" is a presentation by Dr. Alex Hershaft, Holocaust survivor and founder of Farm Animal Rights Movement.

Forks Over Knives examines the claim that most, if not all, of the degenerative diseases that afflict us can be controlled, or even reversed, by rejecting our present menu of animal-based and processed foods. This title is available for instant streaming on Netflix

Vegucated follows three meat-and-dairy-loving New Yorkers as they try to stick to a vegan diet for six weeks. This title is available for instant streaming on Netflix.

Cowspiracy exposes how Big Meat is the number one destroyer of the environment through the use of unsustainable farming practices. It discusses impacts most people don’t associate with agriculture, such as deforestation, greenhouse gas emissions from food transportation and slaughter factories, and the long-term harm most pesticides have on the environment.

Earthlings, a hard-hitting documentary featuring Joaquin Phoenix, uses graphic footage to open people’s eyes to how animals are exploited for human uses, and all 95 minutes will keep your fists clenched around your damp tissues. Grab the tissue box, leave the snacks, take a deep breath, and prepare to be transformed!

Speciesism: The Movie focuses primarily on factory farming with a mix of philosophy along the way relating to animals role in our human run world. Director Mark Devries, who is in his early 20’s, sets out to investigate the world of of factory farms. The film gets its name, Speciesism, from the term coined by British psychologist Richard Ryder in the 1970s who claims that animals can be classed at different values than their human counterpart. Devries film works on changing this belief.

Books

Judaism and Vegetarianism by Richard Schwartz: From God's first injunction, "Behold, I have given you every herb yielding seed, which is upon the face of all the earth, and every tree, in which is the fruit of a tree yielding seed, to you it shall be for food." (Gen. 1:29) The Hebrew Bible offers countless examples of how God intends a compassionate and caring attitude toward animals, our health, and the health of the planet. This attitude, as Richard Schwartz shows in his pioneering work now fully revised, has been a constant theme throughout Judaism to the present day.

Isaac Bashevis Singer short stories: The forty-seven stories in this collection, selected by Singer himself out of nearly one hundred and fifty, range from the publication of his now-classic first collection, Gimpel the Fool, in 1957, until 1981. They include supernatural tales, slices of life from Warsaw and the shtetls of Eastern Europe, and stories of the Jews displaced from that world to the New World, from the East Side of New York to California and Miami.

Animal Suffering and the Holocaust by Roberta Kalechofsky: This book is a response to PETA campaign, "Holocaust on Your Plate." The author is an animal rights activist, but objects to comparison of Holocaust with animal suffering on the grounds that the Holocaust was the result of complex and religious forces which PETA's campaign cannot address. Also, photographs have limited efficacy in explaining complex matters.

Rabbis and Vegetarianism by Roberta Kalechofsky: Essays by and about 17 rabbis show inconsistencies between basic Jewish teachings and the realities of modern meat production and consumption. The rabbis in the anthology are a varied group: Orthodox, Conservative, Reform, and Reconstructionist; male and female; modern and from previous generations; recent converts to vegetarianism as well as long-time proponents. They also use a variety of arguments, all based on Jewish values: preserving health; showing compassion to animals; protecting the environment; and sharing with hungry people. 

Vegetarian Judaism by Roberta Kalechofsky: A timely examination of the problems with meat from a Jewish perspective. Examines the historical Jewish dietary laws, and argues that vegetarianism today best fulfills the requirements of kashrut. Gives reasons for Jewish vegetarianism based on concern for human health, ethical considerations of animal welfare, environmental concerns, concern for poor people, and for the general welfare of the community. 

Eternal Treblinka: Our Treatment of Animals and the Holocaust, by Charles Patterson, Ph.D.: Eternal Treblinka describes disturbing parallels between how the Nazis treated their victims and how modern society treats animals. The title is taken from the Yiddish writer and Nobel Laureate Isaac Bashevis Singer, himself a vegetarian: "In relation to them, all people are Nazis; for the animals it is an eternal Treblinka."

The Soul of Jewish Social Justice by Rabbi Shmuly Yanklowitz: The Soul of Jewish Social Justice offers a novel intellectual and spiritual approach for how Jewish wisdom must be relevant and transformational in its application to the most pressing moral problems of our time. The book explores how spirituality, ritual, narratives, holidays, and tradition can enhance one’s commitment to creating a more just society. Readers will discover how the Jewish social justice ethos can help address issues of education reform, ethical consumption, the future of Israel, immigration, prison reform, violence, and business ethics.