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Written by authors born into the so-called “dilemma of intermarriage,” the stories in Half/Life explore the experience of being raised in a half-Jewish home. Though each essay is distinct, and the experiences are vastly different, each describes growing up without a streamlined identity, unsure of community or religious direction. From Jenny Traig, whose experiences led her to extreme devotion in the form of religious-obsessive compulsion (scrupulosity) to Thisbe Nissen, who finally felt Jewish after discovering a rosary in her boyfriend’s sock drawer, these authors examine the complicated relationships they felt with the Jewish community and the world at large. By turns tragic and funny, religious and heartbreaking, angry and surprisingly familiar, Half/Life represents the altogether diverse memories and reflections of a handful of men and women who have spent a lifetime grappling with how to define themselves, or not. Resulting from that struggle is a complex exploration, and some truly brilliant prose.
|Publisher:||Soft Skull Press, Inc.|
|Product dimensions:||6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x (d)|
Table of Contents
|A Question in the Shape of Your Body||9|
|My Father's Hebrew Name||15|
|Half Holy, Wholly Half||37|
|Bury the Knife in Yonkers or Bibbity Bobbity Jew||43|
|And Half Again on Sunday||59|
|Steefola v. Jane Marie||75|
|A Child's Christmas in New York||83|
|Another Quaquaversalist Puppycat||87|
|One is Not a Jew||93|
|Myself, a Half-Jew Among the Lilies||99|
|You Must Draw a Long Bead to Shoot a Fish||107|
|What to Do If Your Daughter Marries a Jew||125|
|The Awful Rowing||141|
|Dost Thou Know Who Made Thee?||149|
|Language & Vein||169|