Table of Contents
List of Illustrations
Introduction: The Best Medicine
1. German Lebensraum
2. Yiddish Heartland
3. The Anglosphere
4. Under Hitler and Stalin
5. Hebrew Homeland
Conclusion: When Can I Stop Laughing?
When I was 12, my parents bought me a gigantic Yiddish-Russian dictionary. Maybe this was their way of compensating for the fact that they had not told me I was Jewish until second grade, when I came home singing a Ukrainian ditty with the word “zhid.”
Melanie Phillips had stumbled into the culture wars by, as she herself describes it, “the staggering tactic of actually observing what was going on.”
Bellow’s not so innocent knock in The Adventures of Augie March is generally taken as the moment when Jews barged into American literature without apology.
Two new books, different in tone but matched in caliber, show Israelis making their way as best they can in America and in life.