Hadassa is inspired by Myriam Beaudoin’s novel of the same title, published by LEMÉAC in 2006.
Over the course of a school year, a young woman teaching French at an all-girls Hassidic Jewish institute becomes familiar with a strange new world, appealing despite being shrouded in mystery and taboo. The teacher forms a special bond with the brooding, fragile young dreamer Hadassa, whose curiosity about the outside world marks her as different in a school that insists on strict conformity.
Meanwhile, out in the community, a romance is being ignited between a young, recently immigrated Polish grocer and a married Hassidic woman terrified by the fiery passion she feels burning inside her. We’re forced to take a hard look at the price of freedom we so often take for granted. Funny and heartwarming, lively and nostalgic, Hadassa is a story of respect and openness, in which the relaxed values of the West come face-to-face with an ancient culture that will do whatever it takes to protect its own, even if it means closing in on itself…