literature

Israelis in America

New books by Maya Arad and Galit Dahan Carlibach portray Israelis making their way as best they can in America …

My Funny Levantines

Two new novels offer angles of vision into Jewish experience in the (pre- or non-Israeli) parts of the modern Middle …

Literary Currency

Simplicity, in poetry, is complicated. How do we translate the poet Rahel for English language readers? Read the full essay …

Famous Amos

Judas, the latest novel by Amos Oz, is ostensibly an allegory about both the state of Israel and the betrayal …

Jonathan Levi’s Septimania

He is heir to the Islamic Caliphate, the Holy Roman Empire, and the Jewish kingdom of Septimania–but does he get …

A Cipher and His Songs

If you are a lover of Israeli music then you certainly know Avraham Halfi (1906–1980), though perhaps not by name. …

In the Crucifix Kingdom

In a dark Yiddish masterpiece that predated the Holocaust by two decades, the poet Uri Zvi Greenberg envisioned the annihilation …

Bialik’s “To the Bird”

“El-hatsipor” (To the Bird) was Chaim Nachman Bialik’s first published poem. He began its composition while he was still a …

Max and Mirra, Edo and Enam

The true story of Max Eitingon is still being written.  A member of Sigmund Freud’s inner circle and financial supporter …

The Story of the Oy

I like the way Tamara Faith Berger writes sex, although the sex she writes is always of the glowering, desperate …

Ivanhoe and Jewish Politics

I have fond if vague memories of the 1952 film “Ivanhoe,” with Elizabeth Taylor in the role of Rebecca, and which …

Róźycki’s Colonies

The poet devours God in “Ants and Sharks,” the twenty-sixth poem in Tomasz Róźycki’s sonnet sequence Colonies, displacing God at …

Tevye’s Secret

Tevye is Sholem Aleichem’s most beloved character and the Tevye stories his most widely acclaimed literary works.  A good deal …