Emanu-El Reads: People Love Dead Jews (Dara Horn)
Group Discussion of "People Love Dead Jews" with Alexa Asher
Wednesday, July 27, 7:00 – 8:30pm, Reuben Rinder Chapel
Our very own Engagement Program Manager, Alexa Asher, will lead the discussion. Alexa holds a Master’s in Holocaust Studies from the University of Haifa. She just returned to the Bay Area after living the last five years in Israel. Alexa is passionate about combating Holocaust denial and antisemitism and is excited to use her background to inspire Jewish pride during challenging times.
Emanu-El Reads – Summer Book Options for our Charles Michael Scholar-in-Residence, Dara Horn
Leading up to our October scholar, join us in reading two of her most outstanding books. Then, come together virtually for a discussion.
People Love Dead Jews– Often asked by major publications to write on subjects related to Jewish culture―and increasingly in response to a recent wave of deadly antisemitic attacks―Horn was troubled to realize what all of these assignments had in common: she was being asked to write about dead Jews, never about living ones. In these essays, Horn reflects on subjects as far-flung as the international veneration of Anne Frank, the mythology that Jewish family names were changed at Ellis Island, the blockbuster traveling exhibition Auschwitz, the marketing of the Jewish history of Harbin, China, and the little-known life of the "righteous Gentile" Varian Fry. Throughout, she challenges us to confront the reasons why there might be so much fascination with Jewish deaths, and so little respect for Jewish lives unfolding in the present.
Dara Horn is the award-winning author of six books, including the novels In the Image (Norton 2002), The World to Come (Norton 2006), All Other Nights (Norton 2009), A Guide for the Perplexed (Norton 2013), and Eternal Life (Norton 2018), and the essay collection People Love Dead Jews: Reports from a Haunted Present (Norton 2021). One of Granta magazine’s Best Young American Novelists (2007), she is the recipient of two National Jewish Book Awards, the Edward Lewis Wallant Award, the Harold U. Ribalow Award, and the Reform Judaism Fiction Prize, and she was a finalist for the Wingate Prize, the Simpson Family Literary Prize, and the Carnegie Medal for Excellence in Fiction. Her books have been selected as New York Times Notable Books, Booklist’s 25 Best Books of the Decade, and San Francisco Chronicle’s Best Books of the Year, and have been translated into eleven languages. Her nonfiction work has appeared in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, The Washington Post, The Atlantic, Smithsonian Magazine, and The Jewish Review of Books, among many other publications, and she is a regular columnist for Tablet Magazine. Horn received her doctorate in comparative literature from Harvard University, studying Yiddish and Hebrew. She has taught courses in these subjects at Sarah Lawrence College and Yeshiva University, and held the Gerald Weinstock Visiting Professorship in Jewish Studies at Harvard. She has lectured for audiences in hundreds of venues throughout North America, Israel, and Australia. She lives in New Jersey with her husband and four children.