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Memoirs

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Collection
Cover of Jenny Slate's "Little Weirds," cropped

Little Weirds, Lots of Tenderness

by Babette Dunkelgrün

We review Jenny Slate's memoir, Little Weirds.

Topics: Comedy, Memoirs

Episode 35: Becoming Abby Stein

Author and transgender activist Abby Stein grew up in a tight-knit, insular Hasidic community in Brooklyn; she calls it one of the most gender-segregated societies in America. From early childhood, she knew she was a girl, but for her entire life, her community celebrated the fact that she was a boy. In this episode of Can We Talk?, Stein describes her upbringing, her discovery of non-binary genders in Jewish mysticism, and how she parted ways with her community. This is the final episode in our three-part fall author interview series.

Heartburn Book Cover CROP

A Different Kind of Romantic Comedy

by Miranda Cooper

Published nearly 40 years ago, Nora Ephron's first novel, Heartburn, still resonates.

Topics: Memoirs
Sondra Helene and her sister Margie

Writing Through Grief

by Sondra Helene

Author Sondra Helene describes how her sister’s death led her to write a memoir, Appearances.

Topics: Family, Memoirs
If All The Seas Were Ink book cover and Ilana Kurshan headshot

An Interview with Ilana Kurshan about "If All The Seas Were Ink"

by Dina Adelsky

JWA sat down with author Ilana Kurshan to discuss her award-winning memoir, If All The Seas Were Ink, one of our Book Club picks.

Topics: Memoirs
A River Could Be A Tree crop

Angela Himsel On Her Book "A River Could Be A Tree"

by Angela Himsel

Exclusively for JWA, Angela Himsel reflects on seeing her book A River Could Be A Tree in stores for the first time and meditates on the uncategorizable nature of books... and people.

Topics: Memoirs
Abbi Jacobson / I Might Regret This

You Won't Regret This

by Rebecca Long

Onstage with Boston Globe reporter and fellow Jewish lady Meredith Goldstein, Jacobson is personable, sharp, and at times, self-deprecating. Her comedic timing is exactly what you would expect from one of the creators/writers/stars of Broad City: spot on.

Topics: Memoirs

Julie Rezmovic-Tonti, with Jessica Kirzane

Julie Rezmovic-Tonti teaches middle school Jewish history and serves as Outreach Coordinator at Gesher Jewish Day School in Fairfax, Virginia. She has a BA in Women's Studies from the University of Maryland and an MA in Jewish Studies from Siegal College. She also studied at Yeshivat Simchat Shlomo and the Shalom Hartman Institute in Jerusalem.  She lives in Fairfax, Virginia, with her husband, three children, typewriter, pottery wheel, and garden.

Image of Carole King, 2008

Tribute to a Natural Woman

by Dorrit Corwin

Carole King has been a constant source of inspiration and fascination to me since I first listened to “You’ve Got a Friend” in second grade and was entranced by the live performance of Beautiful in Los Angeles. As a young Jewish girl hoping to one day pursue music journalism, I have learned many lessons from King as both an artist and as a strong, independent female.

Topics: Children, Music, Memoirs

Rachel Calof

Rachel Calof’s memoir of life as a mail-order bride in Devils Lake, North Dakota vividly depicts the hardships of life as a western pioneer through the unique lens of a Jewish woman’s experience.

Tova Mirvis

In her novels, Tova Mirvis returns to the themes of characters living in Orthodox communities while struggling with their faith.
Tova and The Book of Separation

Tova Mirvis’ Journey from Orthodoxy to Memoir

by Tova Mirvis

Tova Mirvis is the author of the recently released The Book of Separation, a memoir chronicling her growing doubts about her Orthodox faith and her ultimate decision to leave after forty years in the community.

Abigail Pogrebin

Through her writing, Abigail Pogrebin has explored what Jewish identity means in the 21st century.

Heather Havrilesky

Through her ongoing advice column “Ask Polly,” collected in the 2016 book How to Be a Person in the World, Heather Havrilesky offers advice on love and life to millennials.

Rozka Korczak-Marla

Rozka Korczak-Marla was one of three leaders of the Vilna Ghetto uprising, which, astonishingly, ended with successful escapes rather than mass executions.

Lea Hurvitz

Lea Beninson Hurvitz’s memoirs document not only her own life but the struggles of other women pioneers of the First Aliyah, whose experiences were rarely discussed.

Etty Hillesum

Like Anne Frank, Etty Hillesum kept a diary poetically describing her life under Nazi rule, but her open discussion of her spiritual and sexual exploration prevented it from being published until 1981.

Joanne Greenberg

Under the pen name Hannah Green, Joanna Greenberg turned her struggle with mental illness into the bestselling novel I Never Promised You a Rose Garden.

Frances Kroll Ring

As F. Scott Fitzgerald’s secretary and confidante in his final years, Frances Kroll Ring had a unique view of the famed author’s private self.

Henriette Herz

Henriette de Lemos Herz exercised her intellectual passions through both the salons she hosted and the school she created.

Lynn Povich

In her bestselling 2012 book Good Girls Revolt, Lynn Povich described the 1970 lawsuit against Newsweek that enabled her to become the journal’s first female senior editor.

Rivka Guber

Rivka Bumaghina Guber’s selflessness and her painful sacrifices for the young State of Israel earned her the title “Mother of the Sons” and the respect of the nation.

Eileen Pollack

Discouraged from a promising career in science, Eileen Pollack published her 2015 memoir The Only Woman in the Room to unravel the many instances of sexism, large and small, which push women like her out of STEM fields.

Claire Goll

Claire Goll’s poetry and prose were fueled by the tragedies and scandals that shaped her life.

Margo Glantz

Margo Glantz fused the Yiddish literature of her parents, the Mexican culture of her homeland, and the French traditions of her academic training to create experimental new works of literature.
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