Brandeis, Louis D.
Lehman, Herbert H.
Levy, Uriah P.
Magnes, Judah L.
Santangel, Luis de
Seixas, Gershom M.
Singer, Isaac B.
Straus, Isidor & Ida
Torres, Luis de
by Robert Russin & Susan Fisher (1984), Isaac Bashevis Singer,
year old Isaac Bashevis Singer, sensing the rapidly approaching
catastrophe in Europe, fled Poland and came to America in 1935.
His sole claim to fame at the time was a single Yiddish book published
in Poland: "Satan in Goray." He could speak only three words of
English: "Take a chair." Singer feared that his lot "was to be
one of those writers who write one book and become silent forever."
For the next
ten years Singer barely eked out a living as a critic for the
leading Yiddish newspaper, The Forward. In this period, his total
income from serious literary efforts amounted to a minuscule $90
honorarium received when "Satan in Goray" was published in the
United States in Yiddish in 1943 ... the same year that Singer
became an American citizen.
in 1945, Singer began writing "The Family Moskat," which was serialized
each week in The Forward. He continued writing for them, saying
"I haven't missed a week, except that I get four week's vacation."
Translated into English. Singer's delightful stories have appeared
in Commentary, The New Yorker, and even Playboy magazine. His
editor at Doubleday wrote that "Isaac Bashevis Singer is a literary
figure of imposing stature. (His) prolific output of short stories,
children's books, plays, scholarly works and novels are received
and embraced by an enormous and devoted audience." In an interview,
Rebecca West indicated "I regard Isaac Bashevis Singer as the
greatest writer of today."
Love is a
frequent theme in Singer's writings, along with religion and the
occult. His books have twice won the Natuional Book Award, and
often found their way into best seller lists. They include "The
Spinoza of Market Street," "The Magician of Lublin," "The Slave,"
"In My Father's Court," "Passions," and "Lost in America." One
of Singer's short stories, "Yentl," was transformed into a major
motion picture by Barbra Streisand.
did not change him. After receiving the Nobel Prize for Literature
in 1978, Isaac Bashevis Singer said: "I will still live at the
same address. I will still have the same telephone number. Do
you think that winning a prize can change a man's character?"
Here to Take Isaac Singer Quiz
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