Jewish American Literature: Bernard Malamud, Philip Roth and Cynthia Ozick
Seminar paper from the year 2007 in the subject English - History of Literature, Eras, grade: keine, University of Freiburg (Amerikanistik), language: English, abstract: Introduction My work will try to deal with three representatives of Jewish American Fiction, Bernard Malamud, Philip Roth and Cynthia Ozick. The common thread among such authors is the fact that all three novels deal with refugees or their descendants and are all based in Europe, struggling with their Jewishness and living it out in various forms, the Yiddish elements in them and maybe also the implicit criticism or appraisal of each author towards the others (e.g. as a striking example for all "The Messiah of Stockholm" itself is dedicated to Philip Roth). Each of the European countries that constitute the geographical as well as the historical background of the novels offer a different perspective and/or attitude towards Judaism and experience it in a different manner. The first novel I will examine in my work will be The Fixer by Bernard Malamud, a novel which recreates the story of Mendel Beilis, an ordinary man living in Czarist Russia (1911), who suddenly finds himself accused of the murder of a young Russian boy and so of a ritual murder, according to the age-old lie that Jews kill Christians to use their blood for Passover matzoth 1 (or 2, the unleavened bread the Jews ate when fleeing from Egypt in the thirteenth century B.C. since in their perilous flight they could not wait long enough to wait for the dough to rise 3) . Throughout his work Malamud delivers a portrait of anti-Semitism, imprisonment, degradation, torture, and human integrity. At the same time The Fixer works as a resemblance of the Holocaust, which Malamud otherwise deals with only indirectly. 4 Also Ozick in her work The Messiah of Stockholm imagines that the manuscript of Bruno Schulz, a Polish Jew gunned down by the SS in 1942, has resurfaced: an obsessive Swedish critic believing himself Schulz's son announce
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1972 Jewish American 41-61 Berger Alan American Jewish Literature Annual New York Baumgartner Murray Beiliss Bernard Malamud Biblioteca del Sapere Book Annual Bruno Schulz Chametzky Jules Corriere della Sera Cynthia Ozick Czech Farrar Felstiner John Fixer Flanzbaum Hilene Friedman Lawrence Giroux New York Gottfried Barbara Heidi Hellerstein Kathryn Holocaust idolatry Israele Roma 1974 Jewish American Literature Jewish American novel Jewish history Jewish Identity Jewish Literature Kent Jews Joys of Yiddish Kafka literary main character Malamud Bernard manuscript Menashé Ester Mensile di Israele Messiah of Stockholm Murray and Gottfried Nathan Zuckerman nell’opera di Malamud one’s Philip Roth University Prague Orgy Press New York prison Rassegna Mensile Roth Philip Roth’s Schmuel Sera Rizzoli Larousse Shofar Singer South Carolina Press stories Straus and Giroux Studies in American Umanesimo Ebraico nell’opera Understanding Cynthia Ozick Understanding Philip Roth University of South Vintage New York Yakov Bok Yiddish literature Yiddish writers York London 2001 York Vol