On the day Elissa Altman visits North Carolina to speak at UNC-Chapel Hill, there’s a protester with a sign that reads “Stop Sinning” in front of the building where the author is headed.
“I actually had to laugh,” she says. “What is ‘Treyf’ about? Rule breaking. The forbidden and the ambiguity of life.”
The Hebrew term has a complicated meaning. Used most often to describe prohibited foods such as shellfish and pork, it can also refer to a person who is undesirable or improper.