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Yehuda Amichai: The Making of Israel's National Poet (SIGNED)

Gold, Nili Scharf

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ISBN 10: 1584657332 / ISBN 13: 9781584657330
Published by Brandeis, 2008
Condition: Fine Hardcover
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About this Item

As New. ; SIGNED and inscribed in Hebrew by Nili Scharf Gold to Professor Arnold J. Band and his wife Ora. ; Tight, clean and crisp. In excellent condition. No remainder mark. Not price clipped. Not ex-library. Protected in a new Mylar cover. As New. ; Arnold Band is professor emeritus of Hebrew and comparative literature at UCLA, and founder (in 1969) of the UCLA Comparative Literature Program. ; The Tauber Institute Series for the Study of European Jewry & The Schusterman Series in Israel Studies; 9 X 6.30 X 1.70 inches; 468 pages; Signed by Author. Bookseller Inventory # 27869

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Bibliographic Details

Title: Yehuda Amichai: The Making of Israel's ...

Publisher: Brandeis

Publication Date: 2008

Binding: Hard Cover

Book Condition:Fine

Dust Jacket Condition: Fine

Signed: Signed by Author(s)

Edition: First Edition; First Printing.

About this title


Yehuda Amichai is one of the twentieth century’s (and Israel’s) leading poets. In this remarkable book, Gold offers a profound reinterpretation of Amichai’s early works, using two sets of untapped materials: notes and notebooks written by Amichai in Hebrew and German that are now preserved in the Beinecke archive at Yale, and a cache of ninety-eight as-yet unpublished letters written by Amichai in 1947 and 1948 to a woman identified in the book as Ruth Z., which were recently discovered by Gold.

Gold found irrefutable evidence in the Yale archive and the letters to Ruth Z. that allows her to make two startling claims. First, she shows that in order to remake himself as an Israeli soldier-citizen and poet, Amichai suppressed (“camouflaged”) his German past and German mother tongue both in reference to his biography and in his poetry. Yet, as her close readings of his published oeuvre as well as his unpublished German and Hebrew notes at the Beinecke show, these texts harbor the linguistic residue of his European origins. Gold, who knows both Hebrew and German, establishes that the poet’s German past infused every area of his work, despite his attempts to conceal it in the process of adopting a completely Israeli identity.

Gold’s second claim is that Amichai somewhat disguised the story of his own development as a poet. According to Amichai’s own accounts, Israel’s war of independence was the impetus for his creative writing. Long accepted as fact, Gold proves that this poetic biography is far from complete. By analyzing Amichai’s letters and reconstructing his relationship with Ruth Z., Gold reveals what was really happening in the poet’s life and verse at the end of the 1940s. These letters demonstrate that the chronological order in which Amichai’s works were published does not reflect the order in which they were written; rather, it was a product of the poet’s literary and national motivations.

About the Author:

NILI SCHARF GOLD is Associate Professor of Modern Hebrew Literature at the University of Pennsylvania.

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