The Big Read Blog (Archive)

The Shawl

Photo from the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, courtesy of Instytut Pamieci Narodowej Cynthia Ozick's character in The Shawl , Rosa Lublin, is too real for comfort. Surviving the Holocaust left Rosa damaged beyond repair. She's broken, angry, and overflowing with sorrow. This sorrow...
Cynthia Ozick. Photo by Nancy Crampton Cynthia Ozick shares her favorite novel from growing up and a haunting note about the staying power of the Grimm fairy tales. [audio: http://bigreadblog.arts.gov//audio/Ozickvox.mp3] [ transcript ] To hear the rest of the audio documentary about The Shawl ,...
Art is creation; war is destruction. Yet the overlap between the two can often prove remarkable, as is demonstrated by novels such as Tim O?Brien?s The Things They Carried. In honor of O?Brien?s birthday on Saturday, we asked Donald Anderson, editor of the journal War, Literature & the Arts (...
Washington, DC Holocaust Memorial Berlin , courtesy of d.i. via flickr For nearly all of us, the Holocaust falls into the category of history at this point. It?s something for textbooks and museums, lectures and documentaries. Yet as The Shawl reminds us, what is history for one is memory for...
Washington, DC Image of The Shawl used courtesy of Vintage Books, a division of Random House. The power and precision of Cynthia Ozick?s words supercharge their haunting effect. They make you stop and think and then reread. It?s not easy to read to begin with (atrocities are never easy), but Ozick?...
August 21 , 2009 Washington, DC Inspired by veteran Big Read organizer (and Caldwell Public Library Director) Karen Kleppe Lembo's July 31 article in The Recorder , here's the library's Big Read by the numbers . . . 253 : Number of Big Read activities offered by Caldwell Public Library in Caldwell...
Photo by Alan Zale courtesty of Caldwell Public Library's (New Jersey) Big Read of The Shawl For the month of July, I set myself the challenge of writing a poem a day. While I didn't manage to write each and every day, I did manage to at least start quite a few poems. There's the old saying that...
June 1, 2009 Washington, DC From Mark Sarvas's literary blog, The Elegant Variation , here are a couple of Big Read-related items of interest . . . Tin House has just published The Writer's Notebook: Craft Essays from Tin House . Last week The Elegant Variation serialized Susan Bell?s essay from...
April 17, 2009 Washington, DC Happy Birthday Cynthia Ozick! As a New Yorker, I can't resist celebrating the happy occasion by sharing this quote by Anita Brookner, from a 1999 review in The Spectator . Though The Shawl takes place in Warsaw and Miami, I think the quote speaks to Ozick's deft...
February 17, 2009 Washington, DC Big Read author Cynthia Ozick has more than a dozen books to her credit including a short story collection, collections of essays, and novels. In this excerpt from the Reader?s Guide for The Shawl , Ozick talks about becoming a writer and the difference between...

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