2022 marks the 100th anniversary of Marcel Proust’s death. For the occasion, the “Jewish side” of the author of In Search of Lost Time is the focus of unprecedented attention. The Museum of Jewish Art and History (mahJ) in Paris is showcasing an exhibition “Marcel Proust. Du côté de la mère” (on display through 28 August), whose principal academic advisor is Antoine Compagnon. The professor at the Collège de France has published a book entitled Marcel Proust du côté juif (Marcel Proust: From the Jewish Side) devoted to analyses of the work that have focused on its “Jewish” aspect. After reading this excellent work, Milo Lévy-Bruhl presents Proust from a new angle: as a product of the competing impulses in modern Judaism of return and emancipation.
K. publie cette semaine un entretien réalisé par Antoine Nastasi avec Aharon Appelfeld en 2010, paru initialement dans la revue Esquisse(s). Nous avons demandé à Valérie Zenatti – sa traductrice française – de le lire et de le présenter. Elle nous a livré ce texte sur les langues d’Appelfeld, ou, autrement dit, sur la tension qui traverse le grand écrivain entre l’allemand, sa langue maternelle mais aussi celle des bourreaux, et l’hébreu, sa langue d’adoption dans laquelle il a construit une œuvre que sa mère n’aurait pas pu lire….
Israeli novelist and poet Aharon Appelfeld, born on February 16, 1932 in Jadova (near Czernowitz, then in Romania, now in Ukraine) and deceased in 2018 in Israel, never ceased to “translate” his experience as a child who survived the destruction of the Jews of Europe. We are pleased to publish in K. the interview – never translated in English – conducted by Antoine Nastasi in 2010. In it, Appelfeld speaks of writing and words, of the Hebrew “which has shaped the character of the Jewish people” and delves into his own linguistic travels, from the mother tongue of German to the adopted language of Hebrew, in passing by Yiddish.
Primo Levi died on April 11, 1987 in Turin. On the anniversary of his death, Giorgio Berruto revisits the events of his reception in Italy; in other words, the way in which the witness waited before being recognized as the great writer that he is, today unanimously celebrated.
How does the story of Meursault in The Outsider – and especially the famous scene of his murder – circulate among various writers? From Albert Camus to Kamel Daoud, via A.B. Yehoshua and Edward Said, Beryl Caizzi has identified a set of repetitions and variations that reflect a secret theme on which the inextricable relations between the French, the Arabs and the Jews are projected and interpreted in every possible way.
Published a year ago, The Memory Monster (Restless Books) is Yishai Sarid’s fourth book, after two crime novels and a novel set in a futuristic dystopia. This penultimate novel, The Third, imagined the destruction of Tel Aviv and Haifa, an endeavor to rebuild the Temple in Jerusalem and Israel’s transformation into a theocratic kingdom. The Memory Monster is an equally provocative and disturbing story that questions the relationship of Israelis to Europe and the memory of the Holocaust.
How to photograph Jewish identity? The one that has disappeared, the one that is hidden and the one that is claimed? These questions are at the heart of the exhibition of the work of the great photographer Patrick Zachmann, on show at Paris’ Musée d’Art et d’Histoire du judaïsme until the 6th of March, and reviewed here by Avishag Zafrani. It is an opportunity to travel between the silent stories of the images in search of invisible genealogies. It is also an opportunity to question the aesthetics of memory.
Most of the characters in the film Les Rois de l’arnaque (The Lords of Scam) – broadcast by Netflix, where this documentary met with great success and fascination – share one thing in common: they are Jewish. By looking back at the trajectory of its various protagonists, David Haziza examines the question of Jewish criminality and the sinuous paths of social ascension.
Ulysses is now one hundred years old. James Joyce’s novel was published in its original full text in Paris on February 2, 1922. Leopold Bloom is one of the two main characters of the book. Fans of Joyce’s cult novel have never ceased to speculate about the identity and personality of this son of a Hungarian emigrant, converted to Catholicism and baptized three times. Jewish or not Jewish, Leopold Bloom? Or rather what kind of Jew? Mitchell Abidor investigates the biography and beliefs of one of Ulysses’ heroes.
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