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Michael Douglas: I Feel More of a Religious Connection to Judaism Than Before

Actor Michael Douglas appeared on Thursday’s episode of the PBS series Finding Your Roots, and learned new information about his Jewish paternal side of the family through late father Kirk.

The Wall Street actor and his father, the late Kirk Douglas, are both household names in the Hollywood film industry, but Michael discovered on Finding Your Roots that his Jewish paternal grandfather who sold rags from a cart in America hailed from the town of Chausy, which was part of the Russian Empire but is now in eastern Belarus.

Back in Chausy, Douglas’ family lived in the town’s Jewish ghetto and faced discrimination for their Jewish heritage. The Oscar winner also learned that his grandfather was imprisoned and charged with robbery and his great-uncle, named Moshe, was a wanted man in Chausy accused of armed robbery in 1906.

Douglas made more revelations about his father’s Jewish family during the course of the episode and was even presented with a photo of a Jewish cemetery in Eastern Europe where some of his ancestors were buried.

Upon learning more about these Jewish roots, Michael seemed almost overcome with emotion as he described how it affected his connection to Judaism:

Not that he wasn’t a proud Jew before these revelations.

About the author

Picture of David Lange

David Lange

A law school graduate, David Lange transitioned from work in the oil and hi-tech industries into fulltime Israel advocacy. He is a respected commentator and Middle East analyst who has often been cited by the mainstream media
Picture of David Lange

David Lange

A law school graduate, David Lange transitioned from work in the oil and hi-tech industries into fulltime Israel advocacy. He is a respected commentator and Middle East analyst who has often been cited by the mainstream media
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