John and Anzia: An American Romance (Library of Modern Jewish Literature)

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9780815604518: John and Anzia: An American Romance (Library of Modern Jewish Literature)

"A sublime story woven out of joy, beauty, strength, and shimmer, like a painting by Renoir. Paintings are in this story, and so are New York and Philadelphia, and so are Virginia Woolf and Woodrow Wilson; and the Brahman philosopher of education, and Anzia Yezierska, an immigrant daughter of the Lower East Side; imagine these two embracing for love, for learning (as they really did) strands of Whitman's America entangled in scenes from A Midsummer Night's Dream! Norma Rosen is an artist of the educated heart; and of language, light hope, wonder, and honest becoming". -- Cynthia OzickNorma Rosen's tale of the year-long love affair between the poor, ambitious writer Anzia Yezierska and the brilliant "commonsense philosopher" John Dewey is based on a true story.

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From Publishers Weekly:

Rosen ( At the Center ) bases her love story on archival evidence that renowned philosopher and teacher John Dewey had an affair in 1917 with a Polish immigrant half his age, Anzia Yezierska. Finding clues about the affair in Dewey's poetry and Yezierska's ethnic tales of immigrant life, Rosen frames her story with an explanatory foreword and afterword. Beginning and ending first-person narrative segments are in the voice of Anzia, the only character who really comes to life. Anzia is charming ("Scylla and Charybdis, a phrase from her full-of-gaps reading, were for all she knew two avenues in Minsk.") but Dewey and other players, from Dr. Albert Barnes of Argyrol fame to the body aligner Dr. F. M. Alexander, enjoy only a sort of half-life, portrayed by a limiting combination of historic accuracy and fictional embellishment. As with many fictional treatments based on historic characters, allegiance to the truth ultimately hobbles the interests of fiction. Nonetheless, this is a rich story with wonderful moments.
Copyright 1989 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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Norma Stahl Rosen
Published by Syracuse Univ Pr (Sd) (1997)
ISBN 10: 0815604513 ISBN 13: 9780815604518
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Book Description Syracuse Univ Pr (Sd), 1997. Paperback. Book Condition: New. 1st Syracuse University Press ed. Bookseller Inventory # DADAX0815604513

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