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Jewish Book Carnival, May 2014 Edition

My Machberet is proud to serve as May 2014 host for the Jewish Book Carnival, a monthly event where those who cover Jewish books online “can meet, read, and comment on each others’ posts.” The posts are hosted on a participant’s site on the 15th of each month.”

Herewith, the May 2014 Jewish Book Carnival.

  • My own contribution from My Machberet is a Q&A with Nora Gold regarding her new novel Fields of Exile, which focuses on anti-Israelism in academe.
  • The newest episode of The Book of Life podcast, hosted by librarian Heidi Estrin, features an interview with Karen Propp, who won the 2013 Sydney Taylor Manuscript Award for her work-in-progress Freestyle, based on the true story of champion swimmer Judith Deutsch and the Viennese Hakoah swim team of the 1930s
  • Rebecca Klempner’s blog, Between My Ears and Out of My Mouth, offers a Q&A with Batya Ruddell, whom Rebecca describes as one of the foremost writers in the Hareidi world today, [whose] work is beloved both by readers and other writers.
  • Two items from the Life is Like a Library blog: a review of Donna Jo Napoli’s Storm, narrated by a stowaway on Noah’s Ark, and a report from the Jerusalem Writers’ Seminar, where blogger KSP met favorite authors Yaffa Ganz, Tamar Ansh, and Libi Astaire.
  • Lorri M. Writings & Photography discusses the story of the remarkable Sir Nicholas Winton, especially as depicted in the documentary film Nicky’s Family.
  • On her Reading Rabbi blog, Rabbi Anne Perry explores the presence of Jews and Judaism in work by Pat Conroy. Over on the ReformJudaism.org blog, Rabbi Perry also wrote about two recent books written by Jewish mathematicians: Love and Math by Edward Frenkel, and The Fractalist: Memoir of a Scientific Maverick, by Benoit Mandelbrot.
  • Thanks so much to all of the participants. Please visit the posts linked above and share your thoughts/responses.



    From My Bookshelf: “Helpful to Israel and the Jewish People”–An Interview with Nora Gold

    FieldsofExileDr. Nora Gold’s Fields of Exile has been described as the first novel about anti-Israelism on campus, and it has received enthusiastic advance praise from Phyllis Chesler, Thane Rosenbaum, Steve Stern, and others. Gold is also the author of the acclaimed Marrow and Other Stories, which won a Canadian Jewish Book Award, as well as praise from Alice Munro, who – after reading the title story - wrote Gold: “Bravo!”

    I’ve been a fan of the Toronto-based Gold and her work since reading that collection. And I’ve also had work published in Jewish Fiction.net, an online journal that Gold founded and edits. When I discovered that Fields of Exile was slated for a May 2014 release, I knew that I’d be eager to read it (and I said so in a piece for The Forward‘s Arty Semite blog at the beginning of the year). As I noted then, the new novel seems all-too-timely to anyone following news accounts about the vilification of Israel in academia. According to the novel’s publisher, Dundurn, this novel is “about love, betrayal, and the courage to stand up for what one believes as well as a searing indictment of the hypocrisy and intellectual sloth that threatens the integrity of our society.”

    Gold is also a blogger for “The Jewish Thinker” at Haaretz, and the Writer-in-Residence and an Associate Scholar at the Centre for Women’s Studies in Education (CWSE) at the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education (OISE), University of Toronto. Gold holds both Canadian and Israeli citizenship.

    Please welcome Nora Gold! 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.

  • Mazel tov to the latest winners of Canadian Jewish Book Awards, who will be honored later this month.
  • A poem for Yom HaZikaron.
  • And a poem of mine.
  • New resource: YIVO Digital Archive on Jewish Life in Poland.
  • Finally, as Mother’s Day approaches here in the U.S., I recommend that you spend a few minutes watching filmmaker Judith Helfand’s “Love and Stuff” on NYTimes.com. (It would have moved me to tears even if I hadn’t known the family and attended Florence Helfand’s funeral myself.)
  • Shabbat shalom.

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    Words of the Week: Liel Leibovitz

    “But diversity, that sterling principle of our culture, is precisely what the privilege-checking throttles. To make an example of Fortgang once again, to assume that he, the grandson of a poor Jewish immigrant, stands shoulder-to-shoulder in the same privilege bracket as the grandson of, say, a well-heeled patrician just because both are white men whose parents can afford a good college is to assume that neither is able to transcend the happenstance of his birth and that both, despite having grown up in such radically different traditions, arrive at a conversation with precisely the same point of view, shaped exclusively by their skin, their cocks, and their cash. It is, in other words, to deny that diversity is even a possibility. And that, I hope it goes without saying, is a deeply illiberal thing to do.”

    Source: Liel Leibovitz, “Liberals, Don’t Check Your Privilege,” via Tablet.



    My Machberet to Host May Jewish Book Carnival

    It’s my pleasure to invite contributions for the May Jewish Book Carnival, which will be hosted here on My Machberet.

    You ask, what is the Jewish Book Carnival?

    Per the Association for Jewish Libraries, the Carnival’s headquarters, it is “a monthly event where bloggers who blog about Jewish books can meet, read and comment on each others’ posts.” It aims “to build community among bloggers and blogs who feature Jewish books, and it runs every month on the 15th.”

    You ask, how do I participate? Continue reading ›