News

November 9, 2009

Tel Aviv University Professor Will Discuss Jewish American and Israeli ‘Representative’ Autobiographies Nov. 12

Author Hana Wirth-Nesher taught for nine years in Lafayette’s English department

Hana Wirth-Nesher, an author and professor at Tel Aviv University in Israel, will present the lecture “Whose Story? Jewish American & Israeli ‘Representative’ Autobiographies: The Cases of Amos Oz and Philip Roth” 4:10 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 12, in the Gendebien Room of Skillman Library.

A community dinner will follow in Hillel House, 524 Clinton Terrace. The event is sponsored by Hillel Society and Rhoda Rothkopf ’74.

Wirth-Nesher will compare the autobiographies of Roth and Oz–central male writers in their respective communities–and consider how their works are representative of Israeli and Jewish American identity. She will explore issues such as what a majority or minority autobiography is, how readership determines these categories, and the concept of a “representative life.”

Wirth-Nesher taught in Lafayette’s English department from 1976-1984. She is the Samuel L. and Perry Haber Chair on the Study of the Jewish Experience in the United States and the director of the Goldreich Family Institute for Yiddish Language, Literature, and Culture at Tel Aviv University. She is the author of Call It English: The Languages of Jewish American Literature and City Codes: Reading the Modern Urban Novel, as well as the editor of the Cambridge Companion to Jewish American Literature among other collections. She has published articles on Philip Roth, Saul Bellow, Henry James, V.S. Naipaul, I.B. Singer, Henry Roth, Abraham Cahan, Cynthia Ozick, Charles Dickens, and Virginia Woolf.

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