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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.

  • This Fiction Writers Review interview with Molly Antopol heightened my interest in Antopol’s debut story collection The UnAmericans (although my interest level was already pretty high). Note the segment in which Antopol answers the question, “So do you consider The UnAmericans a Jewish book?” (On a related note: I have a guest post this week on The Whole Megillah in which I reflect [again] on what defines a “Jewish story.”)
  • Joanna Chen’s essay for the Los Angeles Review of Books introduced me to the poetry of Agi Mishol.
  • If, like me, you missed the chance to see the Elif Batuman/Gary Shteyngart double-feature at the 92nd Street Y earlier this month, you can catch the video here.
  • You’ve probably seen plenty of laudatory reviews of Ari Shavit’s My Promised Land (including some cited here on My Machberet). More recently, I’ve caught two less enthusiastic takes: one on The Daily Beast and one from Moment magazine. See what you think about them.
  • And last, but definitely not least: the latest Jewish Book Carnival, hosted most graciously by the Jewish Book Council.
  • Shabbat shalom.

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    Words of the Week: Avi Mayer


    An extraordinary week (thus far) for Israel in The New York Times.

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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.

  • In which Philip Roth rejects (again) the notion that he is an “American-Jewish writer.”
  • B’nai B’rith magazine is looking for a Deputy Editor; at the same time, B’nai B’rith International seeks a Digital Media Strategist. (Both positions are in Washington.)
  • Renee Ghert-Zand reminds us of Philip Seymour Hoffman’s notable “Jewish role” in the Australian clay animation film Mary & Max.
  • “Kaddish for the Last Survivor,” a short story by Michael A. Burstein.
  • An artful piece on “Searching for a Rabbi” by Richard Chess.
  • Shabbat shalom.

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    Words of the Week: Marc Tracy

    “In practice, based both on the preferences of BDS supporters (including [Omar] arghouti, a co-founder) and the movement’s tenets, BDS’s success is most likely to involve the end of the Zionist project. And what this means is that any BDS supporter effectively advocates a one-state solution, even if, should you put the question to him, he would tell you he would prefer two states.”

    Source: Marc Tracy, “With All the Boycott Israel Talk, What Is BDS?” in The New Republic

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    From My Bookshelf: The Exiles Return, by Elisabeth de Waal

    Unknown“If Elisabeth de Waal’s name sounds familiar, credit her grandson, Edmund de Waal. His acclaimed book ‘The Hare with Amber Eyes‘ (2010) chronicled the history of Elisabeth’s family, the Ephrussis, an eminent Jewish clan in Europe. As readers of the younger de Waal’s book may recall, Elisabeth (1899-1991) lived an accomplished life, but one achievement eluded her: Although she wrote five novels — two in German and three in English — not one found a publisher. Until recently.

    The manuscript now published as ‘The Exiles Return‘ is set mainly in 1954-55, in the months leading up to the signing of the State Treaty, which, the novel’s brief and enigmatic prelude reminds us, ‘led to the withdrawal of the Allied Occupation forces and finally restored Austria’s independence.’ This setting may prompt some readers to view ‘The Exiles Return’ as a historical novel, but for Elisabeth, it was a fairly contemporary creation.”

    Please read the rest of my review in The Washington Post.

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