The Arty Semite

'Wild Things' Author Maurice Sendak Dies at 83

By Forward Staff

  • Print
  • Share Share

Maurice Sendak, author of beloved children’s books such as “Where the Wild Things Are” and “In the Night Kitchen,” died May 8 at age 83 of complications from a stroke.

Getty Images

Sendak, who was born in Brooklyn to Jewish immigrants from Poland, broke the conventions of children’s literature with his dark and psychologically acute early books. “Where the Wild Things Are” was published to acclaim and controversy in 1963, and received the Caldecott Medal in 1964. In 1966 Sendak published an illustrated version of Isaac Bashevis Singer’s children’s story “Zlateh the Goat,” which received the Newbery Medal.

Though Sendak produced few children’s books since “Outside Over There,” which was published in 1981, his latest work, titled “Bumble-Ardy,” came out in September 2011. According to The New York Times, a posthumous book titled “My Brother’s Book,” inspired by Sendak’s late brother Jack, is set to be published in February 2013.

In recent years Sendak enjoyed a renewed popularity that included a 2009 film version of “Where the Wild Things Are,” directed by Spike Jonze, and exhibits of his work at museums such as the Contemporary Jewish Museum in San Francisco and Philadelphia’s Rosenbach Museum and Library. He also curated an exhibit of Hanukkah lamps at The Jewish Museum in New York and in January made an appearance on Comedy Central’s The Colbert Report.


Permalink | | Share | Email | Print | Filed under: Where the Wild Things Are, Obituaries, Maurice Sendak, Children's Literature

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!
  • You wouldn't think that a Soviet-Jewish immigrant would find much in common with Gabriel Garcia Marquez. But the famed novelist once helped one man find his first love. http://jd.fo/f3JiS
  • Can you relate?
  • The Forverts' "Bintel Brief" advice column ran for more than 65 years. Now it's getting a second life — as a cartoon.
  • Half of this Hillel's members believe Jesus was the Messiah.
  • Vinyl isn't just for hipsters and hippies. Israeli photographer Eilan Paz documents the most astonishing record collections from around the world:http://jd.fo/g3IyM
  • Could Spider-Man be Jewish? Andrew Garfield thinks so.
  • Most tasteless video ever? A new video shows Jesus Christ dying at Auschwitz.
  • "It’s the smell that hits me first — musty, almost sweet, emanating from the green felt that cradles each piece of silver cutlery in its own place." Only one week left to submit! Tell us the story of your family's Jewish heirloom.
  • Mazel tov to Chelsea Clinton and Marc Mezvinsky!
  • If it's true, it's pretty terrifying news.
  • “My mom went to cook at the White House and all I got was this tiny piece of leftover raspberry ganache."
  • Planning on catching "Fading Gigolo" this weekend? Read our review.
  • A new initiative will spend $300 million a year towards strengthening Israel's relationship with the Diaspora. http://jd.fo/q3Iaj Is this money spent wisely?
  • Lusia Horowitz left pre-state Israel to fight fascism in Spain — and wound up being captured by the Nazis and sent to die at Auschwitz. Share her remarkable story — told in her letters.
  • 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.