Cynthia Ozick Essay

Cynthia Ozick Essay

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Cynthia Ozick (1928 - ….)
Cynthia Ozick was born in New York City on April 17, 1928. She was the second of two children. Her parents, Celia (Regelson) and Wiliam Ozick immigrated to the US from the northwest region of Russia. The family came from the Litvak (Lithuanian) Jewish tradition which was a tradition of skepticism, rationalism and antimysticism.
Her parents owned a pharmacy in Pelham Bay section of Bronx. They worked very hard, usually fourteen hours a day. Cynthia delivered perscriptions sometimes. Her mother was a generous, lavish, exuberant woman full of laughter whereas her father was a discreet, quiet man. He was also a Jewish scholar, and knew Latin and German.
When she was five and a half, her grandmother took her to “heder”, for Yiddish-Hebrew religios instruction. The rabbi told Ozick’s grandmother to take her home because a girl did not have to study. But her grandmother brought her back the very next day and insisted that she was to be accepted. Ozick is grateful to her grandmother for that instince and dates back her feminism to that time.
She describes the Pelham Bay section of Bronx as a lovely place but it was “brutually difficult to be a Jew” there. She remembers having stones thrown at her or being called as Crist’s killer. At home and at the “heder” she was considered intelligent but she was particularly uncomfortable in school because she did not want to sing Christmas carols and was humiliated for that. She felt inadequate and tells that she suffered “ a wormlike childhood in grade school”. But she was excellent in grammar, spelling, reading and writing. And to run away from the dreariness of being different, she dedicated herself to the world of books. She began reading with her older brother’s...


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She has turned 80 earlier this year and has won not one but two lifetime achievement awards. In April 2008, she was receved the PEN/Malamud Award for short fiction and the PEN/Nabakov Award for “enduring originality and consummate craftmanship”.
Bibliography:
Trust – novel, 1966
The Pagan Rabbi – stories, 1971
Bloodshed – novellas, 1976
Levitation – fictions, 1982
Art & Ardor – essays, 1983
The Canibal Galaxy – novel, 1983
The Messiah of Stockholm – novel, 1987
Metaphor &Memory – essays, 1989
The Shawl – stories, 1989
Fame & Folly – essays, 1996
The Puttermesser Papers – novel, 1997
Quarrel & Quandry – essays, 2000
Heir to the Glimmering World – novel, 2004
The Din in the Head – essays, 2006
Dictation – stories, 2008
Souces:
www.reaaward.org
www.jewishvirtuallibrary.org
www.complete-review.com
www.myjewishlearning.com
www.guardian.co.uk

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