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The Stories that Objects Tell
Aug 22, 2022 By Barbara Mann | Public Event video
Download sourcesBibliography | The Object of Jewish Literature Book Information Part of the series, “Stories and Storytelling” With Dr. Barbara Mann, Chana Kekst Professor of Jewish Literature This session is generously sponsored by Yale Asbell, JTS Trustee ABOUT THE SERIES Join JTS scholars to explore a selection of stories drawn from across ancient, rabbinic, medieval, and modern […]Read More
Facing the Other: Moral Dilemmas in Israeli Literature
Mar 1, 2021 By Barbara Mann | Public Event video
Lyric poetry, with its unique voice and vivid imagery, offers a brief but intense opportunity to enter into the intimate space of another. Through texts by canonical Israeli authors (Dan Pagis, Yehuda Amichai, and Dalia Ravikovitch), we will trace a series of poetic encounters between Self and Other: survivor and perpetrator; mother and child; victim and hero; Jew and Palestinian.Read More
Remembering the Pandemic: Learning from Yehuda Amichai
Jun 29, 2020 By Barbara Mann | Public Event video
What will we remember from this pandemic? And how will we preserve and pass down the memory of those we’ve lost to future generations? Through a close reading of Yehuda Amichai’s “And Who Will Remember the Rememberers?”, a poem sequence exploring Israel’s memorialization of 1948, we reflect on the elusiveness of memory, the limits of public forms of memorializing and mourning, and the paradoxical relationship between memory and forgetting.Read More
The Pogrom that Endured
Apr 5, 2018 By Barbara Mann | Commentary
The sun shone, the blossom bloomed, and the slaughterer slaughtered.
The image of the slaughterer in springtime is an indelible part of the DNA of twentieth-century Jewish experience, juxtaposing as it does the casual brutality of history with the most mundane of natural events. Its source is Bialik’s epic poem about the Kishinev pogrom of 1903. Despite the many words written about the events of that April—personal testimony, journalistic reportage, memorial texts, poetry, and even a Broadway play (The Chosen People by Evgenii Chiriko)—the warp and woof of this particular incident simply won’t let us alone.Read More
Sep 20, 2017 By Barbara Mann | Commentary | Ha'azinu
Attentive the heart. The ear listening:
Is anyone coming?
Every expectation contains
the sadness of Nevo.
One facing the other—two shores
Of a single river.
The rock of fate:
Ever far apart.
Artisan and Architect
Mar 4, 2016 By Barbara Mann | Commentary | Vayak-hel
Ben Uri looked at the work of his hands and was astonished at how the ark stood firm while he himself was like an empty vessel. His soul was sad and he broke out in tears.
—S. Y. Agnon, AgunotRead More
“I Will Go to the Mountain of Myrrh”
Apr 10, 2015 By Barbara Mann | Commentary | Pesah
The Song of Songs is an essential text for modern Hebrew culture, and was perhaps the most beloved biblical book of modernist authors such as S. Y. Agnon and artists such as Ze’ev Raban (1890–1970). Hebrew fiction writers and poets in Palestine in the interwar period plumbed the Song for its extensive lexicon describing the body and the landscape, and its sensitive depiction of psychological and sexual drama. Their modern descriptions of the land before them were often rendered in terms that recalled the erotic interiors and pastoral domain of the Song. Raban taught at the Bezalel Academy of Arts and Design in Jerusalem, and his Jugendstil (German Art Nouveau) illustrations of the Song of Songs (1923) are an exemplary cultural product of their time.Read More
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