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From My Bookshelf: Molly Antopol’s “The UnAmericans” (and an Interview with the Author)

UnAmericansEarlier this year, I published an article listing five “Jewish books” scheduled for publication in 2014 that I was already especially eager to read. Molly Antopol‘s  The UnAmericans was one of those titles. As I wrote at the time: “I’m not the only one with high expectations for this debut collection of short stories. Anointed by the National Book Foundation as one of its ’5 Under 35′ honorees, Antopol and her book (which W.W. Norton will release in February) have received plenty of pre-publication buzz. “My stories move from McCarthy-era Los Angeles to modern-day Jerusalem to communist Prague,” Antopol has said in an interview, adding that many of the stories were inspired by her family history.

Well, I purchased a copy for my Kindle and began reading. And I was just as impressed as I expected to be. Molly and I connected online, and I asked her if she’d be willing to answer a few questions for My Machberet. Continue reading ›

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Jewish Literary Links for Shabbat

Photo Credit: Reut Miryam Cohen

Every Friday morning My Machberet presents an assortment of Jewish-interest links, primarily of the literary variety.

  • Tablet is celebrating National Poetry Month, “sharing stories about poetry and poets from our archives all month.”
  • Speaking of poetry–you know how director Darren Aronofsky has a new movie out about Noah and the flood? Well, thanks to The Forward, we can also read a poem Aronofsky wrote about that story back in seventh grade.
  • “My Memoirs Made Me Jewish, or How Jewish Is Enough?”–guest post by Nancy K. Miller for The Whole Megillah.
  • J-Job alert: The United States Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington is looking for a Writer/Editor. Application period closes April 9.
  • Shabbat shalom.

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    Words of the Week: Rabbi Joshua M. Davidson

    RabbiDavidsonA few days ago, the Yom Kippur 5774 sermon delivered by Rabbi Joshua M. Davidson (Temple Emanu-El of New York City) was brought to my attention. It’s stellar. I can’t choose just a few words to excerpt. You must read “Standing on Our Own Doorstep” in its entirety.

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    Jewish Literary Links for Shabbat

    Photo Credit: Reut Miryam Cohen

    Every Friday morning My Machberet presents an assortment of Jewish-interest links, primarily of the literary variety.

  • On the Museum of Jewish Heritage’s blog: an excerpt from Simon Schama’s The Story of the Jews.
  • A column by Rabbi Fishel Schachter inspires Rebecca Klempner to reflect on writing for children.
  • I’m always happy to find a new story by Etgar Keret. (Thanks, Tablet!)
  • The Forward‘s Arty Semite blog features “Eve and Lilith Back at the Garden,” a poem by Lynn Levin.
  • Next week brings the next Jewish Book Council/Jewcy Twitter Book Club. On Wednesday, April 2 at 1:30 pm ET, Jean Hanff Korelitz will be talking/tweeting about her newest book, You Should Have Known!
  • Shabbat shalom.

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    Words of the Week: Matthew Weiner

    “The driving question for the [Mad Men] series is, Who are we? When we talk about ‘we,’ who is that? In the pilot, Pete Campbell has this line, ‘Adding money and education doesn’t take the rude edge out of people.’ Sophisticated anti-Semitism. I overheard that line when I was a schoolteacher. The person, of course, didn’t know they were in the presence of a Jew. I was a ghost. Certain male artists like to show that they’re feminists as a way to get girls. That’s always seemed pimpy to me. I sympathize with feminism the same way I identify with gay people and with people of color, because I know what it’s like to look over the side of the fence and then to climb over the fence and to feel like you don’t belong, or be reminded at the worst moment that you don’t belong.”

    Source: Matthew Weiner, quoted in “The Art of Screenwriting No. 4,” The Paris Review.

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