Raised in a nonreligious Jewish family, Charles London knew
hisheritage but had no strong desire to experience it personally.
Thenin the summer of 2004, while doing relief work in Bosnia, he
stumbled upon a remarkable community--where Jews worked alongside
Muslims and Christians to rebuild a city ravaged by war. This
encounter gave him the idea for a journey that would take him
aroundthe world and back to his roots.
Far from Zion is the story of Jews in far-flung, often
surprising places. Despite efforts by Israel to bring these
scattered people home to Zion, they have chosen to remain in the
lands of their birth: a shopkeeper selling Jewish trinkets in Iran,
a caretaker keeping watch over an all-but-forgotten synagogue in
Rangoon, revelers at a Hanukkah celebration in an Arkansas bowling
alley, a Cuban engineering professor, proud of his Jewish heritage
and prouder still of his Communist ideals. It is through their
stories and many others that London examines his own identity, as
he, too, struggles to come to terms with his connection to
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