Pre-Shabbat Jewish Literary Links

Photo Credit: Reut Miryam Cohen
Photo Credit: Reut Miryam Cohen
Every Friday My Machberet presents an array of Jewish-interest links, primarily of the literary variety.

  • So much excellent work on Hevria this week, including “How the Rebbe Inspired Me to Be a Writer”; “Orthodox Writers, Meet Your Role Model”; and “Mermaid Esther: An Astonishing Fire.”
  • Montreal has a new mural–honoring Mordecai Richler.
  • A follow-up to Moment magazine’s recent list of Jewish podcasts—this time featuring readers’ recommendations.
  • If video is more your thing, check out the Forward‘s list of 10 Jewish movies you can stream for free (the Forward is calling them “overlooked,” but I’m not sure that’s always the case).
  • From the revelation that it took him about two years to really inhabit the protagonist of To the End of the Land to a reflection on how each of his books has been necessary to the writing of those that have followed, David Grossman shared a multiplicity of quiet insights—personal, professional, and political—during his recent appearance at the JCC Manhattan.
  • Shabbat Shalom.

    Pre-Shabbat Jewish Lit Links

    Photo Credit: Reut Miryam Cohen
    Photo Credit: Reut Miryam Cohen

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

  • Presenting this month’s Jewish Book Carnival–hosted by the Jewish Book Council.
  • On the Fig Tree Books blog: a stroll down literary-memory lane (and a re-assessment of Philip Roth’s The Plot Against America).
  • Jewish Currents has announced the theme for the Fourth Annual Raynes Poetry Competition: “Urge.” NB: This competition charges an entry fee of $18, which includes a one-year subscription to the magazine.
  • Here’s hoping that Baba Joon, the next official Israeli selection for nomination as “Best Foreign Language Film” at the Oscars, makes it to U.S. distribution soon.
  • From Mosaic magazine: a review of Edward Alexander’s Jews Against Themselves, which is on my tbr list. It’s a thorough review but doesn’t quite contain any spoilers: I’d already sensed that this book won’t be happy read.
  • Shabbat shalom.

    From My Screen: ABOVE AND BEYOND

    Over the Shavuot/Memorial Day weekend, I watched an extraordinary film. In its simplest terms, the film might be described (as a New York Times reviewer has written) as follows: “Produced by Nancy Spielberg (sister of Steven Spielberg), the documentary ‘Above and Beyond’ recounts the story of Jewish American pilots who, beginning in 1948, secretly fought for Israel in its war of independence, when the Israeli military was nascent.”

    It’s an amazing story. To be sure, it’s not without its discomforts. For starters, the American Jews who participated in this effort were risking their U.S. citizenship. But by the end of the film, one can’t help thinking of the devastating consequences had they not made the choices that they did.

    The same NYT reviewer mentioned above also notes that “the movie’s one-sided view of history is bound to start arguments.” Maybe. But if this is a “one-sided view of history,” it’s also an accurate view of history. For instance, the Arab countries’ 1947 rejection of the U.N. Partition Plan that would have created the first-ever Palestinian state is included as part of the prelude to Israel’s War of Independence. Not everyone is cognizant of this pre-history to Israel’s declaration of statehood. Is its inclusion what the reviewer means by “one-sided”?

    Regardless, I strongly recommend this film, especially for anyone who wants to learn more about the establishment of the State of Israel and the contributions of American Jews to that achievement. Above and Beyond can be viewed via (some) on-demand cable companies, iTunes, and at screenings. You’ll find more information on the film’s website.

    Pre-Shabbat Jewish Lit Links

    Photo Credit: Reut Miryam Cohen
    Photo Credit: Reut Miryam Cohen
    Every Friday My Machberet presents an array of Jewish-interest links, primarily of the literary variety.

  • Mitch Ginsburg profiles Dalia Betolin-Sherman on the occasion of the publication of the Ethiopian-born Israeli writer’s first story in English.
  • Mazal tov to the winner and honorable mentions for this year’s ALA/Sophie Brody Medal for outstanding achievement in Jewish literature.
  • On the Fig Tree Books website: a fresh appraisal of Isaac Bashevis Singer’s Shosha.
  • Some of the most moving moments of this past week for me: watching “Defiant Requiem,” a documentary “which illuminates the extraordinary, untold story of the brave acts of resistance by the Jewish prisoners at Terezín.” Let’s just say that although I’ve always loved Verdi’s Requiem, I’ll never listen to it in quite the same way again.
  • “The Jewish Student Press Service is looking to hire a recent or soon-to-be college graduate for the full-time position of editor-in-chief of the national Jewish student magazine New Voices. The new editor would simultaneously serve as executive director of the Jewish Student Press Service.”
  • Shabbat shalom.

    Pre-Shabbat Jewish Lit Links

    Photo Credit: Reut Miryam Cohen
    Photo Credit: Reut Miryam Cohen

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

  • A hearty Mazal Tov to the winner and finalists for the latest Wallant Award: David Bezmozgis, Molly Antopol, Boris Fishman, and David Strayer-Petrov.
  • The Washington Jewish Film Festival is looking for a Production Coordinator
  • And the Boston Jewish Film Festival seeks an Artistic Director.
  • Fig Tree Books presents another array of online offerings from the world of American Jewish Experience.
  • For The Jewish Week, Sandee Brawarsky reviews Patrick Modiano’s newly translated novellas.
  • Shabbat shalom.

    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.

  • Nice to see yet another reader–this time, the “Reading Rabbi”–has enjoyed the new translation of Aharon Appelfeld’s Suddenly, Love.
  • So sorry I discovered the PEW-ish theatrical project too late to attend.
  • Consider yourself forewarned–you may never be able to approach Fiddler on the Roof with the same fondness you once did after you read this piece by Ruth Wisse.
  • New Jersey Jewish News Editor-in-Chief Andrew Silow-Carroll writes about that tricky term–tribalism.
  • The Westchester (New York) Jewish Film Festival seeks a part-time Associate Programmer.
  • Shabbat shalom.