It's unusual for three first-rate contemporary Jewish writers (Philip Roth, Cynthia Ozick, and David Grossman) to pay homage in their fiction to a somewhat obscure literary figure. But in Ozick's novella "The Messiah of Stockholm," Grossman's novel "See Under: Love," and Roth's story "The Prague Orgy," the gossamer figure of Bruno Schulz, the extraordinary Polish Jewish writer killed by the Nazis, predominates.
At almost the same moment last week that Uri Grossman, the 20-year-old son of Israeli novelist David Grossman, was reported killed in battle, I got news that an Israeli friend who had been called up to serve as a medic in the north of Israel had taken a David Grossman book with him.
When my friend came to California a few days ago for vacation, I asked him why he grabbed that particular book. He responded: “It was right there on my shelf. Anyway, I didn’t have time to get to the library.”
Vered Ben-Shimon speaks slowly, rolled up on a couch. She is frail and constantly short of breath. Once an Israeli dance teacher who worked out four times a week, she now sleeps 14 hours a day.
She cannot lift or take care of her 19-month-old son."I can't do anything physical. I can't drive," says Vered, 34.
The Huntington resident, who moved from Israel with her husband, Uri, in 1987, has been diagnosed with viral cardiomyopathy, or congestive heart failure.
"I need a new heart. I could die any day," she says.
When Israel finally flatlines, don’t say The Atlantic didn’t warn you.
In May 2005, Atlantic published a lengthy speculation, “Will Israel Live to 100?” The answer suggested that the Zionist house was built more of twigs than of bricks. Now that Israel is hitting 60, the Atlantic asks again, more ominously and more immediately: “Is Israel Finished?”