Jabotinsky was a complex figure — brilliant and a promulgator of doomsday scenarios. A new biography may help some readers feel a little less scared of him.
Hillel Halkin once declared the Jewish Diaspora ‘doomed.’ More than 35 years later, he revisits the topic — and finds time has not tempered his opinion.
I appreciate Hillel Halkin’s passionate claim that my cartoon of Stephen Hawking supports the boycott of Israel and promotes anti-Semitism. Unfortunately, that is not the cartoon I drew.
Moyshe Kulbak made a conscious decision to live in the Soviet Union. A translation of his masterful Yiddish novel ‘The Zelmenyaners’ should bring his work to a new audience.
With a new year come new names and fresh ideas to the pages of the Forward. I am pleased to announce the addition of two columnists who join the estimable list of writers contributing monthly to our opinion section.
Meir Shalev, one of Israel’s most renowned novelists, interviewed Ludmilla Ulitskaya from Russia at the International Writers’ Festival at Mishkenot Sha’ananim in Jerusalem on Tuesday May 4. Author of “Blue Mountain” (1991, “Russian Novel” in the Hebrew, translated by Hillel Halkin), more recently the acclaimed “A Pigeon and A Boy” (2007, translated by Evan Fallenberg) and the forthcoming “That’s How it Was,” Shalev discussed with Ulitskaya some of the similarities and differences between Russian and Israeli writers. I caught up with him after the panel to ask a few more questions:
When a far-left Tel Aviv University historian penned a tome dedicated to disputing the historicity of Jewish peoplehood, it — unsurprisingly — caused something of a stir in Israel. Then the book was translated and published in France, where it — also unsurprisingly — was given a prestigious prize. (This prompted the estimable Hillel Halkin, writing in the pages of the Forward, to note that “if one is talking about the ‘construction’ of national identities… it is the French and Spanish who are the parvenus, having undertaken the task only in the late Middle Ages,” whereas Jews “had a fully developed national consciousness at least 2,500 years ago.”)