Jewish American Women Writers

Jewish American Women Writers

by Ann Shapiro
     
 

Even among scholars of Jewish literature, Jewish American women writers have been largely neglected. Nevertheless, these women have made an enormous contribution to literature and culture. This reference explores the extraordinary achievement of Jewish American women novelists, poets, and playwrights who have written in English. Every effort was made to provide a

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Overview

Even among scholars of Jewish literature, Jewish American women writers have been largely neglected. Nevertheless, these women have made an enormous contribution to literature and culture. This reference explores the extraordinary achievement of Jewish American women novelists, poets, and playwrights who have written in English. Every effort was made to provide a representative selection of writers, and the final list was determined after consultation with specialists and scholars.

The volume is composed mainly of entries arranged alphabetically by writer. Many of these women have an indisputable place in the literary canon, while others are relative newcomers to the field. Still others are being rediscovered after years of neglect. The profiles provide a biography, bibliography, and survey of criticism for each author. Each also provides an analysis of the writer's work by a scholar in Jewish American literature, women's studies, or a related field. An introductory essay defines the scope of Jewish American women's literature, while a special chapter is devoted to writers of autobiographies who document the experience of Jewish women in America.

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Editorial Reviews

Zom Zoms
As the subtitle suggests, this volume focuses on three aspects of each author: her life, her work, and critical analysis of some of those works. Every profile is actually divided into "Biography," "Major Themes," "Survey of Criticism," and "Bibliography," which includes works by and about the writer. The biographical and themes sections show how the author's background is reflected in what she writes. The surveys of criticism are often short. Researchers looking for critical analysis would do better with Gale's "Contemporary Literary Criticism" The more than 50 authors profiled include poets, playwrights, and novelists. About a dozen are deceased, including Edna Ferber and Fannie Hurst, but the majority are still writing today, including Erica Jong and Wendy Wasserstein. In addition to the alphabetically arranged entries, the book includes an overview of the field of writing by Jewish American women. In this introduction, the tenets of Judaism that made writing difficult for these women are pointed out, giving the reader a greater appreciation for their accomplishments. There is also a concluding chapter that examines the many autobiographies written by Jewish American women. This discussion of some of the 200 or so works gives readers insight into the ethnic background from which these authors matured Each author entry is written by a recognized scholar in Jewish American literature or related fields, and contributors are identified at the end of the book. A glossary of unfamiliar ethnic terms is included, as is a general bibliography. The index includes personal names and titles This title would be most appropriate for large public libraries or academic libraries with ethnic or women's studies collections.
Booknews
A reference that explores the achievements of 57 Jewish American women novelists, poets, and playwrights who have written in English. Composed mainly of entries arranged alphabetically by author, the volume provides a biography, bibliography, and survey of criticism for each, along with a critical analysis. Among the best known authors: Andrea Dworkin, Edna Ferber, Lillian Hellman, Fannie Hurst, Erica Jong, Maxine Kumin, Tillie Olsen, Cynthia Ozick, Grace Paley, Marge Piercy, Adrienne Rich, Muriel Rukeyser, Susan Sontag, and Gertrude Stein. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780313284373
Publisher:
ABC-CLIO, Incorporated
Publication date:
09/12/1994
Pages:
576
Product dimensions:
6.14(w) x 9.21(h) x 1.25(d)

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