This book offers original insights into modern Hebrew, Yiddish, and other Jewish literatures, including a new interpretation of Franz Kafka's place within them and discussions of Sholem Aleichem, Sh. Y. Abramovitsh, Akhad ha'am, M. Y. Berditshevsky, Kh. N. Bialik, and Y. L. Peretz.
Miron (Hebrew and comparative literature, Columbia U.) brings extraordinary depth and breadth of thought to his work; he is the author of some than 30 volumes of literary scholarship and criticism in Hebrew, Yiddish, English, German, and Russian. He describes the present volume in a prologue as "... focusing on argument rather than offering solid proof, offering an ongoing narrative rather than being historically descriptive, being argumentative and conceptual rather than mimetic." He begins with discussion of the "old" Jewish literary discourse and the illusion of Israeli cultural normalcy. Subsequent chapters address modern Jewish literary thinking--the enlightenment and advent of nationalism and then proceed through time: the 19th & 20th centuries literary renaissance, the interbellum decades--Hebrew, and Yiddish issues; Franz Kafka, and his contiguity with Sholem Aleichem. The concluding chapter looks toward new and freshly illuminating discourse. Annotation ©2011 Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)
For the 150th anniversary of the birth of the "Jewish Mark Twain,"a new translation of his most famous works Tevye the Dairyman and Motl the Cantor's Son are the most celebrated characters in all of Jewish fiction. Tevye is the lovable, Bible-quoting father of seven daughters, a modern Job whose wisdom, humor, and resilience inspired the lead character in Fiddler on the Roof. And Motl is the spirited and mischievous nine-year-old boy who accompanies his family on a journey from their Russian shtetl to New York, and whose comical, poignant, and clear-eyed observations capture with remarkable insight the struggles and hopes and triumphs of Jewish immigrants to America at the turn of the twentieth century.
The first complete translation of an epic love story by the creator of Tevye in Fiddler on the RoofNext year marks the 150th anniversary of the birth of the great Yiddish humorist Sholem Aleichem as well as the 100th anniversary of the publication of Wandering Stars, his sprawling love story spanning ten years and two continents, and set in the colorful world of the Yiddish theater. In a Russian shtetl at the end of the nineteenth century, Reisel, daughter of a poor cantor, and Leibel, son of a rich man, fall under the spell of a traveling Yiddish acting company. Together they run off to join the theater but quickly become separated. Reisel goes on to become Rosa Spivak, concert star, and Leibel becomes Leo Rafalesko, theatrical sensation. Kept apart by their own successes and by the managers who exploit their talent, they tour the world until their wanderings bring them both to New York. An engrossing romance, a great New York story, and an anthem for the theater, Wandering Stars is a long-lost literary classic, rediscovered here in a vibrant new translation.
"An uproarious, sprawling masterpiece by a grand Yiddish storyteller." -O, The Oprah Magazine Translated in full for the first time, one hundred years after its original publication, the acclaimed epic love story set in the colorful world of the Yiddish theater. Wandering Stars spans ten years and two continents, relating the adventures of Reizel and Leibel, young shtetl dwellers in late nineteenth-century Russia who fall under the spell of a traveling acting company. Together they run away from home to become entertainers themselves, and then tour separately around Europe, ultimately reuniting in New York. Wandering Stars is an engrossing romance, a great New York story, and an anthem for the magic of the theater.
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