Erica Silverman
Children's Book Author

When the Chickens Went on Strike

adapted by Erica Silverman
from a tale by Sholom Aleichem
illustrated by Matthew Trueman


One Rosh Hashanah, a boy overhears some chickens planning a strike. They are sick of being used for Kapores, the New Year custom in which people swing a live chicken over their heads, hoping to erase their bad deeds. When all of the chickens run away, the women try to coax them back with grain, the men try to get them back with force, and the rabbi tries to negotiate. Finally the boy pleads, "Without Kapores, I will never be able to make my papa proud." A chicken responds, "Boychick, for this you need a chicken?" This amusing and telling story about wise chickens and foolish villagers will be enjoyed by anyone who has ever wanted to be a better person.



"...the absurdity of the plot gives way to an eminently rational and even profound resolution, wherein the boy, interrogated by a chicken, realizes that he does not, perhaps, need Kapores to bring honor to himself and his parents...this wise and funny book might be enjoyed at all times of year, by a wide range of readers." Publishers Weekly