Jewish Literary Links for Shabbat

Photo Credit: Reut Miryam Cohen
  • This week brought us the April Jewish Book Carnival, an assortment of book-focused blog links from a multiple contributors. Many thanks to April’s host, Amy Meltzer and her terrific Homeshuling blog.
  • An extensive (and salty) interview with U.S. Poet Laureate Philip Levine, complemented by several poems, on Tablet.
  • My friend B.J. Epstein is a scholar of children’s literature (among her other areas of expertise). This week, she shared some thoughts on “No Happy Endings: Holocaust Memorial Day and Children.”
  • In case you missed the post earlier this week, author Ellen Cassedy anticipated Yom HaShoah with reflections on Eva Hoffman’s inspirational After Such Knowledge.
  • Also on the Holocaust theme: my enthusiastic review of Laurent Binet’s HHhH (translated by Sam Taylor).
  • And an item from my Practicing Writing blog, about Yom HaShoah and my short story collection, Quiet Americans.
  • Shabbat shalom.

    Yom HaShoah Reflections on Eva Hoffman’s AFTER SUCH KNOWLEDGE (A Guest Post by Ellen Cassedy)

    As we approach Yom HaShoah (Holocaust Remembrance Day), author Ellen Cassedy shares reflections on an influential book in this guest post.

    Remembering the Holocaust with Eva Hoffman

    by Ellen Cassedy

    “What meanings does the Holocaust hold for us today – and how are we going to pass on those meanings to subsequent generations?” These are the questions Eva Hoffman poses in her courageous book, After Such Knowledge: Memory, History, and the Legacy of the Holocaust.

    Hoffman’s acclaimed memoir, Lost in Translation, recounts her emigration from Poland at age 13 with her parents, who were Holocaust survivors, and her struggles to adjust to her new home in Canada. Published 15 years later, in 2004, After Such Knowledge is less well-known, but it made a deep impression on me when I first read it. As we observe Yom HaShoah, Holocaust Remembrance Day, I’ve been rereading it and finding it as provocative and valuable as ever.

    The book is a multi-faceted meditation. It draws on Hoffman’s personal experiences and those of other children of survivors; her extensive reading in the fields of psychology, culture, and politics; and her years of conversations with Poles and Germans of all ages.

    I discovered the book at the exact moment that I myself was embarking on a journey to the Old World – to Lithuania, the land of my Jewish forebears. (more…)

    Jewish Literary Links for Shabbat

    Photo Credit: Reut Miryam Cohen
  • “The Story,” one of the stories in Edith Pearlman’s Binocular Vision that I found most affecting, has recently been posted online.
  • Coming soon at the Sixth Street Synagogue in NYC: the wordSpoke Poetry Festival.
  • Mazel tov to Herman Wouk on his latest book deal!
  • Jonathan Kirsch weighs in on Peter Beinart’s new book.
  • Looking ahead to next week: My Machberet will welcome guest blogger Ellen Cassedy. Get to know the author of We Are Here: Memories of the Lithuanian Holocaust before her “appearance” here.
  • Last call for my Sunday afternoon event with the City Congregation for Humanistic Judaism here in NYC. Perhaps I’ll see you there?
  • And as the holiday draws to a close, D.G. Myers considers Passover in fiction.
  • Shabbat shalom!

    Jewish Literary Links for Shabbat

    Photo Credit: Reut Miryam Cohen
  • Among the books on my tbr list is a review copy of the New American Haggadah, whose novelist creators attracted the attention of The New York Times last weekend. (For more about the new Haggadah, see Jeffrey Goldberg, who makes an important guest appearance in the NYT article. Or check out Amy Meltzer’s Homeshuling post, where you can also enter a giveaway and perhaps win a copy of the New American Haggadah for yourself.)
  • The Patagonian Hare, an English version of Claude Lanzmann’s memoir, translated by Frank Wynne, is out this week. Carlin Romano writes about it.
  • In the new Atlantic, Joseph O’Neill writes about Philip Roth and “The American Trilogy.”
  • From Israel, Judy Labensohn shares “The Writing Workshopper’s Prayer.”
  • There’s a new book club in town.
  • Shabbat shalom!

    Jewish Literary Links for Shabbat (& Hanukkah)

    Okay, so they’re a day ahead of schedule. But I’m setting out on a long weekend away, and I wanted to be sure not to neglect my weekly links!

  • I trust that you are all having a happy Hanukkah. I’m still kvelling over my own story (forgive me!) on the 2011 NPR Hanukkah Lights special. (And marveling over the fact that I’m sharing the radio-stage with Tamar Yellin, whose work I’ve admired for several years.) I’ve also written a little something about the story’s background and the research that went into it.
  • Remaining with the Hanukkah theme: Gail Fishman Gerwin’s “Are We Done Yet?” (courtesy of Your Daily Poem).
  • And if you’re still buying a gift or two, you may find some ideas within Josh Lambert’s latest books column for Tablet.
  • From Poets & Writers magazine, an account of a remarkable Jewish writing workshop: “Last year Poets & Writers funded two workshops in Tucson, Arizona, led by writer Deborah Mayaan and Rabbi Stephanie Aaron. We asked Mayaan to reflect on the first workshop, which occurred just a week after the shooting that took the lives of six people and injured thirteen others, including congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords.”
  • Intriguing review by Steven Amanick–with a focus on literary evidence–of Gertrude Himmelfarb’s The People of the Book: Philosemitism in England from Cromwell to Churchill.
  • Shabbat shalom and Happy Hanukkah!