"A good writer is basically a story-teller, not a scholar or a redeemer of mankind."

Isaac Bashevis Singer
1904-1991
Winner, 1978 Nobel Prize in Literature

Isaac Bashevis Singer is the only Nobel Prize laureate for literature to ever have written primarily in Yiddish. Born in Radzymin, Poland, and raised in the shtetl of Bilgorai, Singer wrote his numerous books and stories in America, to which he fled from the Holocaust in 1935. His works ressurect a noble and petty world of Eastern European Jewry that he knew intimately.

The son of a Hasidic Rabbi, Singer's stories and novels are populated by the creations of centuries of Jewish superstition and folklore: dybbuks, demons, witches, and goblins, as well as the more friendly golems and the people of Chelm. But in addition to a tradition of Talmud and Kabbala, he was influenced by Baruch Spinoza, Nikolay Gogol, Leo Tolstoy, and Fyodor Dostoevsky. His novels and short stories often feature pathetic but pure martyrs, or alternatively, miserable moral downfalls that begin when "this one covets the other's broom". His characters are always richly drawn, and many, such as Yentl the Yeshiva Boy and Gimpel the Fool have become cultural icons.

I.B. Singer Bibliography:

Novels: Short Story Collections: Memoirs: Children's Books:

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