Synopses & Reviews
Gershon Shaked's history of modern Hebrew fiction traces the emergence and development of a literature "against all odds"--from its European roots in the 1880s, when it had neither a country nor a spoken language, to the flowering of a literary culture on Israeli soil through the 1990s. The product of more than 20 years of research, it is unique in its scope, profiling four generations of Hebrew writers.
"In this abridgement of his definitive five-volume work in Hebrew (1977-99), Shaked (emer., Hebrew Univ., Jerusalem) first details the war of the languages between Yiddish, the polyglot Germanic language of Jews in the Diaspora, and Hebrew, the traditional sacred language of prayer. Though he barely mentions world literary figures like Sholem Aleichem and I.B. Singer (who wrote mainly in Yiddish), he discusses those few writers who wrote significantly in both Hebrew and Yiddish. Shaked gives both a general picture of historical trends and conditions and acute, succinct explications of the best works by the most notable writers. He catalogs four distinct generations of Hebrew writers--from the European-born of the 1880s to those born in post, 1948 Israel. He devotes full chapters only to Mendele Mokher Seforim and S.Y. Agnon. A detailed index and bibliography, a source list of Hebrew literary journals and newspapers, and a glossary of Hebrew terms and historical references supplement this volume, which is recommended for significant collections in comparative literature and Judaica serving upper-division undergraduates and above." --D. S. Gochberg, Michigan State University, 2001jan CHOICE. Indiana University Press
About the Author
Gershon Shaked is Professor Emeritus of Hebrew Literature at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. In addition to many works in Hebrew, his English language publications include *The Shadows Within: Essays on Modern Jewish Writers*, *Shmuel Yosef Agnon: A Revolutionary Traditionalist*, and* Eight Great Hebrew Short Novels* (coedited with Alan Lelchuk). Shaked is the recipient of the Israel Prize and the Bialik Prize.
Table of Contents
Preliminary Table of Contents:
1. A Literature "Against All Odds": The Advent of Modern Hebrew Literature
2. Mendele Mokher Seforim: "Formulation" and the Stirrings of Hebrew Social Realism
3. Hebrew Literary Romanticism: Religion, Myth, and the Westernization of Hebrew Literature
4. Hebrew Literary Realism: From the "New Path" to Local Color Fiction
5. Psychological Realism and the Poetics of Disenchantment: Literature *De Profundis*
6. Genre and Anti-Genre: Will All Hopes Be Fulfilled?
7. The Crossroads, or Is This the Abode of the Spirit? S. Y. Agnon
8. To Build and Be Rebuilt: Homeland Art and the Third Aliyah
9. Hebrew Literary Modernism: Jewish Fiction and the International Scene
10. Literary Realism, 1940-1980: Transformations of a Genre and the Struggle for National Narrative
11. Political Crisis and Literary Revolution: The New Wave, 1960-1980
12. Toward the 1990s: A Generation without Dreams