Celebrate the best in Jewish writing at the 11th Annual Hyman S. & Freda Bernstein Jewish
Literary Festival. Presented by the Washington D.C. Jewish Community
Center’s Morris Cafritz Center for the Arts, this year’s Festival features
a selection of authors who have received national recognition for their
works, including rave reviews from publications such as The Washington
Post, The New York Times and The Wall Street Journal. The Festival runs
The books selected for this year’s Festival appeal to book lovers with
diverse interests including history, humor, poetry, fiction and much more.
This year’s featured authors are:
* Neal Bascomb, author of Hunting Eichmann
* Deborah Bodin Cohen, author of Nachshon, Who Was Afraid to Swim
* Morris Dickstein, author of Dancing in the Dark
* Melissa Ford, author of Navigating the Land of IF
* Robin Gerber, author of Barbie and Ruth
* Zoë Heller, author of The Believers
* Dara Horn, author of All Other Nights
* Jonathan Keats, author of Book of the Unknown
* Binnie Kirshenbaum, author of The Scenic Route
* Nora Labiner, author of German for Travelers
* Joy Ladin, author of Transmigration Poems
* Shana Liebman, author of Sex, Drugs & Gefilte Fish
* Melvin Urofsky, author of Louis D. Brandeis: A Life
“For more than a decade, the Hyman S. & Freda Bernstein Jewish Literary
Festival has hosted authors who have made an impact on the literary world,
authors beloved by readers of all backgrounds,” says Lili Kalish Gersch,
the Festival’s director. “This year’s authors are no exception, and we‘re
honored to have them join us as we celebrate our 11th year.”
During the 10-day event, attendees will have the opportunity to enjoy
thoughtful talks and readings by featured authors, participate in
engaging discussions with them, and enjoy stimulating conversations with
other avid readers.
The Festival opens on Sunday, October 18, with a celebration of the 50th
anniversary of the publication of famed American novelist Philip Roth’s
first book, Goodbye, Columbus with an extraordinary evening of literature
and theater. Attendees will enjoy dramatic readings from Goodbye,
Columbus, Patrimony, Portnoy’s Complaint, Everyman and others. Adapted and
directed by Derek Goldman, Artistic Director of the Davis Performing Arts
Center at Georgetown University, the show will begin at 8:00 pm, and will
be followed by a reception.
In addition to the author events, attendees can view a screening of Adam
Resurrected on Monday, October 19, at the Aaron & Cecile Goldman Theater.
Based on the novel by Israeli author Yoram Kaniuk, the film stars Jeff
Goldblum and William Dafoe, and tells the story of Adam Stein, a
charismatic patient at a mental institution for Holocaust survivors in
1961. Following the film, American University professor Pamela Nadell will
lead a discussion with the audience. The show will begin at 7:30 p.m.
On Saturday, October 24, the Festival will present SLAM: An Evening of
Spoken Word Poetry with featured performer and artist Jake Marmer. Local
poets and spoken word performers will also have the opportunity to take
the stage. This event will be at Hillyer Art Space, located 9 Hillyer
Court NW. The show begins at 9:00 p.m.
This year’s children’s book event, Sefer Safari, will explore the world of
books and the art of storytelling with a morning of crafts and family
activities. Kids can get a hands-on lesson on how books are made during a
bookbinding workshop, enjoy a reading of Nachshon, Who Was Afraid to Swim
by Deborah Bodin Cohen, 2009 Sugarman Award winner, and learn how to tell
their own stories using words, music and body movement during the
storytelling session. The Sefer Safari will take place on Sunday, October
25, at 10:30 a.m. in the center’s preschool lobby.
The Festival closes on Wednesday, October 28, with the Gerald L. Bernstein
Memorial Lecture. This year’s speaker is Professor Howard M. Sachar,
American historian and author of the landmark book, A History of the Jews
in America. Sachar will speak on current Israeli myths and realities, and
the historic and agonizing dilemma of reconciling small state security
with Great Power diplomacy. The lecture will take place in the Aaron &
Cecile Goldman Theater at 8:00 p.m., and will be followed by a reception.
Date: October 18-28, 2009
Tickets are available beginning September 15. To purchase Festival passes
or tickets for individual events and locations, please visit
www.washingtondcjcc.org/litfest or call (202) 777-3251. A full schedule of
events is also available on the Web site. The Washington DCJCC is located
at 1529 16th Street NW in Washington D.C.