A starry-eyed young beauty, Marjorie Morgenstern is nineteen years old when she leaves New York to accept the job of her dreams-working in a summer-stock company for Noel Airman, its talented and intensely charismatic director. Released from the social constraints of her traditional Jewish family, and thrown into the glorious, colorful world of theater, Marjorie finds herself entangled in a powerful affair with the man destined to become the greatest-and the most destructive-love of her life. Rich with humor and poignancy, Marjorie Morningstar is a classic love story, one that spans two continents and two decades in the life of its heroine. This unforgettable paean to youthful love and the bittersweet sorrow of a first heartbreak endures as one of Herman Wouk's most beloved creations.
Marjorie leaves her family and fiancé for a season of summer stock at an east coast resort, where she meets and falls in love with a handsome producer. He sweeps her off her feet and into a once-in-a-lifetime love affair and teaches Marjorie her first lessons about the theater and life.
In You Never Call, You Never Write, Joyce Antler provides an illuminating and often amusing history of one of the best-known figures in popular culture--the Jewish Mother. Whether drawn as self-sacrificing or manipulative, in countless films, novels, radio and television programs, stand-up comedy, and psychological and historical studies, she appears as a colossal figure, intensely involved in the lives of her children. Antler traces the odyssey of this compelling personality through decades of American culture. She reminds us of a time when Jewish mothers were admired for their tenacity and nurturance, as in the early twentieth-century image of the "Yiddishe Mama," a sentimental figure popularized by entertainers such as George Jessel, Al Jolson, and Sophie Tucker, and especially by Gertrude Berg, whose amazingly successful "Molly Goldberg" ruled American radio and television for over 25 years. Antler explains the transformation of this Jewish Mother into a "brassy-voiced, smothering, and shrewish" scourge (in Irving Howe's words), detailing many variations on this negative theme, from Philip Roth's Portnoy's Complaint and Woody Allen's Oedipus Wrecks to television shows such as "The Nanny," "Seinfeld," and "Will and Grace." But she also uncovers a new counter-narrative, leading feminist scholars and stand-up comediennes to see the Jewish Mother in positive terms. Continually revised and reinvented, the Jewish Mother becomes in Antler's expert hands a unique lens with which to examine vital concerns of American Jews and the culture at large. A joy to read, You Never Call, You Never Write will delight anyone who has ever known or been nurtured by a "Jewish Mother," and it will be a special source of insight for modern parents. As Antler suggests, in many ways "we are all Jewish Mothers" today.
“[An] enchanting journey through Ann Hood’s early fascination with reading.… Book lovers will find Morningstar irresistible.”—Lynn Sharon Schwartz, author of Ruined by Reading Growing up in a mill town in Rhode Island, in a household that didn’t foster a love of reading, novelist Ann Hood discovered nonetheless the transformative power of literature. She learned to channel her imagination, ambitions, and curiosity by devouring ever-growing stacks of books. In Morningstar, Hood recollects with warmth and honesty how The Bell Jar, Marjorie Morningstar, The Harrad Experiment, and The Outsiders influenced her teen psyche and introduced her to topics that could not be discussed at home: desire, fear, sexuality, and madness. Later, Johnny Got His Gun and Grapes of Wrath dramatically influenced her political thinking while the Vietnam War and Kent State shootings became headline news, and classics such as Dr. Zhivago and Les Misérables stoked her ambitions to travel the world. With characteristic insight and charm, Hood showcases the ways in which books gave her life and can transform—even save—our own lives.
Their relationship was that of fairy tales. Their devotion so intense they wed each other not once, but twice. In the first book to focus on both Natalie Wood and Robert Wagner, the author of the bestseller Gable & Lombard and the critically acclaimed book Cary Grant gives us a scintillating portrait of this glamorous and exciting couple from their early years working for the studio system to the final, shattering hours before Natalie Wood's life tragically ended. We follow them on their roller-coaster ride of the ups and downs and the magic and the madness of this couple who became Hollywood royalty.
Key Texts in American Jewish Culture expands the frame of reference used by students of culture and history both by widening the "canon" of Jewish texts and by providing a way to extrapolate new meanings from well-known sources. Contributors come from a variety of disciplines, including American studies, anthropology, comparative literature, history, music, religious studies, and women's studies. Each provides an analysis of a specific text in art, music, television, literature, homily, liturgy, or history. Some of the works discussed, such as Philip Roth's novel Counterlife, the musical Fiddler on the Roof, and Irving Howe's World of Our Fathers, are already widely acknowledged components of the American Jewish studies canon. Others-such as Bridget Loves Bernie, infamous for the hostile reception it received among American Jews+ may be considered "key texts" because of the controversy they provoked. Still others, such as Joshua Liebman's Piece of Mind and the radio and TV sitcom The Goldbergs, demonstrate the extent to which American Jewish culture and mainstream American culture intermingle with and borrow from each other.
A witty and addictively readable day-by-day literary companion. At once a love letter to literature and a charming guide to the books most worth reading, A Reader's Book of Days features bite-size accounts of events in the lives of great authors for every day of the year. Here is Marcel Proust starting In Search of Lost Time and Virginia Woolf scribbling in the margin of her own writing, "Is it nonsense, or is it brilliance?" Fictional events that take place within beloved books are also included: the birth of Harry Potter’s enemy Draco Malfoy, the blood-soaked prom in Stephen King’s Carrie. A Reader's Book of Days is filled with memorable and surprising tales from the lives and works of Martin Amis, Jane Austen, James Baldwin, Roberto Bolano, the Brontë sisters, Junot Díaz, Philip K. Dick, Charles Dickens, Joan Didion, F. Scott Fitzgerald, John Keats, Hilary Mantel, Haruki Murakami, Flannery O’Connor, Orhan Pamuk, George Plimpton, Marilynne Robinson, W. G. Sebald, Dr. Seuss, Zadie Smith, Susan Sontag, Hunter S. Thompson, Leo Tolstoy, David Foster Wallace, and many more. The book also notes the days on which famous authors were born and died; it includes lists of recommended reading for every month of the year as well as snippets from book reviews as they appeared across literary history; and throughout there are wry illustrations by acclaimed artist Joanna Neborsky. Brimming with nearly 2,000 stories, A Reader's Book of Days will have readers of every stripe reaching for their favorite books and discovering new ones.
Deftly melding ethnography, cultural history, literary criticism, and autobiographical reflection, A Feeling for Books is at once an engaging study of the Book-of-the-Month Club's influential role as a cultural institution and a profoundly personal meditation about the experience of reading. Janice Radway traces the history of the famous mail-order book club from its controversial founding in 1926 through its evolution into an enterprise uniquely successful in blending commerce and culture. Framing her historical narrative with writing of a more personal sort, Radway reflects on the contemporary role of the Book-of-the-Month Club in American cultural history and in her own life. Her detailed account of the standards and practices employed by the club's in-house editors is also an absorbing story of her interactions with those editors. Examining her experiences as a fourteen-year-old reader of the club's selections and, later, as a professor of literature, she offers a series of rigorously analytical yet deeply personal readings of such beloved novels as Marjorie Morningstar and To Kill a Mockingbird. Rich and rewarding, this book will captivate and delight anyone who is interested in the history of books and in the personal and transformative experience of reading.