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The Wandering Jews
The Wandering Jews

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Manufacturer: W. W. Norton & Company
Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company
Author(s): Joseph Roth

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Product Description:
Binding: Paperback
EAN: 9780393322705
ISBN: 039332270X
Item Dimensions: Array
Label: W. W. Norton & Company
Languages: Array
Manufacturer: W. W. Norton & Company
MPN: illustrations
Number Of Items: 1
Number Of Pages: 168
Publication Date: 2001-11-17
Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company
Studio: W. W. Norton & Company
Editorial Review:

The classic portrait of a vanished people.

Every few decades a book is published that shapes Jewish consciousness. One thinks of Wiesel's Night or Levi's Survival in Auschwitz. But in 1927, years before these works were written, Joseph Roth (1894-1939) composed The Wandering Jews. In these stunning dispatches written when Roth was a correspondent in Berlin during the whirlwind period of Weimar Germany, he warned of the false comforts of Jewish assimilation, laid bare the schism between Eastern and Western Jews, and at times prophesied the horrors posed by Nazism. The Wandering Jews remains as vital today as when it was first published. "[A] book of impassioned reportage and polemic...it is impossible not to feel a sympathetic wonder."―Michael Andre Bernstein, The New Republic "In these disturbing yet strikingly illuminating pages, the truth of Jewish destiny from long ago vibrates and sings..."―Elie Wiesel "No other writer...has come so close to achieving the wholeness that Lukacs cites as our impossible aim."―Nadine Gordimer "What a marvelous writer! Read him now. You can thank me later."―Michael Dirda, Washington Post Book World

"
[C]aptures and encapsulates Europe in those uncertain hours before the upheaval of a continent and the annihilation of a civilization."―Cynthia Ozick, author of Quarrel and Quandary  "[A] writer well worth adding to the short list of giants such as Thomas Mann, Elie Wiesel, and Primo Levi."―Hadassah Magazine, Sanford Pinsker
As a journalist, Joseph Roth's greatest strength, and perhaps his greatest weakness, was his self-professed love for his subjects. Roth, who is best known for his novels (particularly The Radetzky March), was the star journalist for the Frankfurter Zeitung in the early 1920s, when he began writing stories that led to The Wandering Jews. This book, newly translated by Michael Hofmann, is a masterpiece of literary journalism whose political prescience (regarding tensions between Eastern and Western Jews and the too-easy consolations of assimilation) is grounded in eclectic character studies (of, for instance, Parisian elites, a carnival performer from Radziwillow, a dock worker in Odessa). In an age of idea-driven journalism, when stories are often tailored to prove a writer's pre-existing thesis, Roth's lovingly inductive reasoning is refreshing. And his aphoristic insights are as spontaneous as they are circumspect. ("When a catastrophe occurs, people on hand are shocked into helpfulness.") The statement that best summarizes Roth's belief about the unalterable fate of the Jews also epitomizes the polished spontaneity of his style: Roth writes that wandering is "a tribulation that is appropriate to all Jews, and to all others besides. Lest we forget that nothing in this world endures, not even a home; and that our life is short, shorter even than the life of the elephant, the crocodile, and the crow. Even the parrots outlive us." --Michael Joseph Gross
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