Jewish Literary Links

an open book (with Hebrew pages visible); subtitle reads "Jewish Literary Links"
Image by Yedidia Klein from Pixabay

  • Update from the National Library of Israel, which “will reopen to the public on Wednesday, September 2nd, in compliance with the ‘Purple Standard.'”
  • Announced this week: “Wendy McClure at Albert Whitman has bought world rights to Dear Mr. Dickens, a nonfiction picture book by Nancy Churnin, illustrated by Bethany Stancliffe, in which a brave young woman, Eliza Davis, reproaches the most famous and powerful author of her time, Charles Dickens, for creating Fagin in Oliver Twist, and asks him to help fight anti-Semitism by creating sympathetic Jewish characters. Publication is scheduled for fall 2021.” (Publishers Weekly)
  • Another superb short story, this time published in Sixfold, by my friend Elizabeth Edelglass: “First They Came for the Torahs.”
  • Sefaria (which, remember, I support based on sales of Birthright) “is seeking a freelance writer and editor to support our work in making Jewish texts accessible online. This role is a part-time, temporary contract position through the end of 2020 with the potential to move forward into 2021. This position will require a minimum of 20 hours per week. Compensation is hourly and depends on experience, starting at $30 per hour.” (P.S. Per an announcement on Twitter: This is a remote position.)
  • Speaking of Birthright (and Jewish texts): I recently discussed the Eshet chayil text, which inspired “A Single Woman of Valor,” one of the poems in the book, on Mark Gerson’s “The Rabbi’s Husband” podcast. I’m thinking that I’ll read this poem when I participate in Sunday’s Jerusalism virtual open-mic event, too. Maybe you’ll be there, too?

Shabbat shalom!

an open book (with Hebrew pages visible); subtitle reads "Jewish Literary Links"

4 thoughts on “Jewish Literary Links

  1. Michele j Clark says:

    Love the idea of the “Dear Mr. Dickens” book. George Eliot was good on antisemitism – viz: Daniel Deronda. That’s something. Sigh.

    1. Erika Dreifus says:

      Apparently Charles Dickens was no George Eliot!

      1. David Groskind says:

        Dickens was surprised that his readers took Fagin as representative of Jews in general because, he said, he had depicted Christians in the novel as bad or worse. To dispel the accusation he was antisemitic, he wrote Our Mutual Friend with a pointedly sympathetic Jewish character. In subsequent editions of Oliver Twist Dickens reduced the number of references to Fagin being a Jew. See the entry for Dickens at for a brief discussion of the issue and a longer article “Antisemitism and Social Critique in Dickens’s Oliver Twist” on

  2. Daniel Deronda inspired Emma Lazarus to advocate for a Jewish homeland in Palestine.

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