The Arty Semite

Forward Favorites for the National Book Critics Awards

By Ezra Glinter

  • Print
  • Share Share

The National Book Critics Circle announced the finalists for its annual book awards on Saturday, which include Benjamin Moser’s “Why This World,” a biography of the Brazilian Jewish novelist Clarice Lispector.

Born Chaya Lispector in Chechelnik, Ukraine in 1920, Lispector was brought to Brazil as an infant. There she went on to write books such as “The Passion According to G.H.”, in which a woman achieves spiritual climax by eating the insides of a cockroach. In “Why This World,” Moser argues that Lispector’s life and work should be understood in the spirit and history of Jewish mysticism.

Back in August, Forward contributor Yelena Akhtiorskaya reviewed Moser’s book, writing that:

“’Why This World’ by Benjamin Moser is the first English-language biography of Lispector, and as such it is worthy. Comprehensive, inspired, respectful of necessary silences — it does what Lispector set as a goal for her own writing: to leave unexplained what cannot be explained.”

Read the whole thing here.

Also up for an award, under the criticism category, is one-time Forward contributor Morris Dickstein’s “Dancing in the Dark: A Cultural History of the Great Depression.”

We’ll be rooting.


Permalink | | Share | Email | Print | Filed under: The Passion According to G.H., National Book Critics Circle, Morris Dickstein, Dancing in the Dark, Clarice Lispector, Chaya Lispector, Books, Benjamin Moser, Why This World, Yelena Akhtiorskaya

The Jewish Daily Forward welcomes reader comments in order to promote thoughtful discussion on issues of importance to the Jewish community. In the interest of maintaining a civil forum, The Jewish Daily Forwardrequires that all commenters be appropriately respectful toward our writers, other commenters and the subjects of the articles. Vigorous debate and reasoned critique are welcome; name-calling and personal invective are not. While we generally do not seek to edit or actively moderate comments, our spam filter prevents most links and certain key words from being posted and The Jewish Daily Forward reserves the right to remove comments for any reason.




Find us on Facebook!
  • Jon Stewart responds to his critics: “Look, obviously there are many strong opinions on this. But just merely mentioning Israel or questioning in any way the effectiveness or humanity of Israel’s policies is not the same thing as being pro-Hamas.”
  • "My bat mitzvah party took place in our living room. There were only a few Jewish kids there, and only one from my Sunday school class. She sat in the corner, wearing the right clothes, asking her mom when they could go." The latest in our Promised Lands series — what state should we visit next?
  • Former Israeli National Security Advisor Yaakov Amidror: “A cease-fire will mean that anytime Hamas wants to fight it can. Occupation of Gaza will bring longer-term quiet, but the price will be very high.” What do you think?
  • Should couples sign a pre-pregnancy contract, outlining how caring for the infant will be equally divided between the two parties involved? Just think of it as a ketubah for expectant parents:
  • Many #Israelis can't make it to bomb shelters in time. One of them is Amos Oz.
  • According to Israeli professor Mordechai Kedar, “the only thing that can deter terrorists, like those who kidnapped the children and killed them, is the knowledge that their sister or their mother will be raped."
  • Why does ultra-Orthodox group Agudath Israel of America receive its largest donation from the majority owners of Walmart? Find out here: http://jd.fo/q4XfI
  • Woody Allen on the situation in #Gaza: It's “a terrible, tragic thing. Innocent lives are lost left and right, and it’s a horrible situation that eventually has to right itself.”
  • "Mark your calendars: It was on Sunday, July 20, that the momentum turned against Israel." J.J. Goldberg's latest analysis on Israel's ground operation in Gaza:
  • What do you think?
  • "To everyone who is reading this article and saying, “Yes, but… Hamas,” I would ask you to just stop with the “buts.” Take a single moment and allow yourself to feel this tremendous loss. Lay down your arms and grieve for the children of Gaza."
  • Professor Dan Markel, 41 years old, was found shot and killed in his Tallahassee home on Friday. Jay Michaelson can't explain the death, just grieve for it.
  • Employees complained that the food they received to end the daily fast during the holy month of Ramadan was not enough (no non-kosher food is allowed in the plant). The next day, they were dismissed.
  • Why are peace activists getting beat up in Tel Aviv? http://jd.fo/s4YsG
  • Backstreet's...not back.
  • from-cache

Would you like to receive updates about new stories?




















We will not share your e-mail address or other personal information.

Already subscribed? Manage your subscription.