The Forward 50

Nathan Englander

Culture

Nathan Englander

The Forward 50

Though Nathan Englander may identify himself as an “apostate,” one of this 42-year-old author’s greatest talents is his ability to capture the spectrum of Jewish experience. In this year’s story collection, “What We Talk About When We Talk About Anne Frank,” Englander channeled voices of Israeli settlers, Jewish children and senior citizens, and, in the terrific title story, the voices of two Jewish couples — one Orthodox, one not.

Writing in these pages, Forward managing editor Dan Friedman remarked that the best stories in this collection, which won the 2012 Frank O’Connor International Short Story Award, “combine superb prose draftsmanship with an ability to draw out a single element to its absurd, sometimes tragic, conclusion.”

This year also saw the publication of the “New American Haggadah,” edited by Jonathan Safran Foer and translated by Englander. Forward columnist Philologos praised Englander’s translation as “clear and simple, with none of the pomposity that too many translations of traditional Jewish texts fall into in an attempt to be uplifting.” This fall also marks the debut of Englander the playwright. He has adapted “The Twenty-Seventh Man,” a story from his 1999 debut collection “For the Relief of Unbearable Urges,” for the Public Theater in New York.

Englander has frequently said that, when his second book, the novel “The Ministry of Special Cases,” was published nine years after his debut, he was relieved to finally become an author of “books” rather than just a “book.” Soon, Englander will be able to say he is also a writer of “plays.” Lincoln Center has commissioned him to adapt the title story in “What We Talk About…” for the stage.


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.