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Pre-Shabbat Jewish Literary Links

Photo Credit: Reut Miryam Cohen


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

  • Nina Badzin explains why she doesn’t write about politics/Israel–and a few other things.
  • An interesting post by Michael Weingrad on Dan Simmons, “the major science fiction writer whose work most frequently focuses on Jews.” (h/t Mosaic magazine)
  • From the Jewish Ensemble Theatre in West Bloomfield Hills, Michigan: “Though submissions are CLOSED for the 2014 play festival, we are currently taking submissions for the 2015 New Play Festival. Scripts should be submitted in hard copy only, along with a $10 processing fee payable to JET and a stamped self-addressed envelope if return is desired.” (h/t Theatre Funding Newsletter)
  • Eminent author Marilynne Robinson recently visited Israel. Beth Kissileff spoke with Robinson about her trip–and her views about the BDS movement.
  • I’ll admit it: I’m more than a little jealous of the 36 high school students mentioned here.
  • Shabbat shalom.

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    From My Bookshelf: Rachel Mennies’s Jewish Poems

    290_glad handMy online path recently crossed that of poet Rachel Mennies, and how glad I am that it did. Soon enough, I was immersed in Mennies’s debut full-length poetry collection, The Glad Hand of God Points Backwards. The book was published this year as the winning manuscript in the Walt McDonald First-Book Series in Poetry, housed at Texas Tech University Press.

    Here, in part, is how ImageUpdate has described the collection:

    Rachel Mennies’s first collection is a powerful lyric account of a woman’s search for self through her relationship to God, Judaism, and history. These carefully-shaped poems arrest the reader with startling imagery and sound. With a compelling voice that is at once anguished and utterly composed, these poems ask: how does one reconcile one’s personal faith and struggles with those of one’s ancestors? And how, within the context of this history, does one come to terms with a God of witness and mercy?

    But, wait–there’s more. I’m so grateful to Mennies for the permission to publish this sample from the book: Continue reading ›

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    Pre-Shabbat Jewish Literary Links

    Photo Credit: Reut Miryam Cohen


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

  • One of many sad consequences of current events: Israeli Arab writer Sayed Kashua is emigrating. I wish him all the best, and I will renew my efforts to read his books.
  • More TBR ideas in the “Summer Bookfest” issue of the Hadassah-Brandeis Institute’s 614.
  • ICYMI here on My Machberet: two posts featuring “Words of the Week” and fiction suggestions for the current moment from D.G. Myers (and others).
  • So much content worth your time in the new issue of Lilith, including “Lot’s Wife,” a retelling of the biblical story, by Michal Lemberger; a stunning account of terror in Jerusalem, by Natasha Basin Levina (translated by Sonia Melnikova-Raich); and superb reviews of two books that I, too, have found remarkable: Marina Blitshteyn on Orly Castel-Bloom’s Textile (trans. Dalya Bilu) and Liana Finck on Roz Chast’s Can’t We Talk About Something More Pleasant?.
  • An extraordinary essay by Claire Hajaj, daughter of a Jewish mother and a Palestinian father. (h/t @alexnazaryan)
  • Shabbat shalom.

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    Fiction for, If Not of, Our Times

    I have such respect for D.G. Myers. I’m so grateful that he launched this topic on Twitter today. And I’m going to share with you his subsequent tweets for your reference and edification (and for mine). Continue reading ›

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    Pre-Shabbat Jewish Literary Links

    Photo Credit: Reut Miryam Cohen

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

  • A part-time job is available for an individual to “to staff and take responsibility for the small mobile branch of the Jewish Community Library at the Oshman Family JCC in Palo Alto.”
  • A delightful–if daunting–photo of the book-review decision table at Lilith magazine.
  • Famed author Nadine Gordimer passed away on Sunday; here’s Benjamin Ivry’s excellent post on Gordimer’s “Jewish life and times.”
  • Helen Epstein explores the “Jewish Lives” biography series from Yale University Press.
  • This week I ran across some remarkable Jewish poetry by Rachel Mennies and Yael Massen.
  • Rabbi Jonah Dov Pesner on The New York Met, the Death of Leon Klinghoffer, and Today’s Israeli-Palestinian Conflict: “I am calling on people to be smart and vote with your feet: Don’t be a party to moral equivalency masquerading as art.”
  • Shabbat shalom.

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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.

  • Now available: the summer issue of the Jewish Review of Books (though much seems to be paywall-protected).
  • Lots of terrific material (no paywalls!) in the latest Jewish Book Carnival, too.
  • “ZEEK is proud to be launching a new summer fiction series” and seeks submissions. Deadline: July 1. NB: “Full disclosure: Zeek does not pay contributors.”
  • And speaking of fiction, Tablet has posted another piece in its fiction series, this time by Alexander Besher. Haven’t read it yet; hope to do so this weekend.
  • The Forward is hiring a Digital Fellow.
  • Shabbat shalom.

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