The Shalvi/Hyman Encyclopedia of Jewish Women

Features thousands of biographic and thematic essays on Jewish women around the world. Learn more

Ellen Umansky

by JWA Staff
Our work to expand the Encyclopedia is ongoing. We are providing this brief biography for Ellen Umansky until we are able to commission a full entry.

In her debut novel, Ellen Umansky emphasizes the evolving legacy of the Holocaust and the power of grappling with the past to better understand the present. Umansky graduated from the University of Pennsylvania in 1991 and began publishing fiction, book reviews, and essays in Slate, Tablet, and The New York Times. Much of her writing focuses on Jewish themes: Jewish-American children struggling to understand a Holocaust that happened long before their birth, Chabad-run preschools in secular Jewish communities, Yiddish writer Sholem Asch’s controversial 1939 novel about the life of Jesus. In 2017 Umansky published her first novel, The Fortunate Ones, in which a stolen painting links two woman confronting their childhood sins, one a Holocaust survivor from Vienna, the other a young native of Los Angeles.

How to cite this page

Jewish Women's Archive. "Ellen Umansky." (Viewed on September 20, 2021) <https://jwa.org/encyclopedia/article/umansky-ellen-0>.

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