New Book: Tzur, Space and Place in the Novels of S. Yizhar (in Hebrew)

צור, דביר. בין הבית לשדה, בין אדם למקום. המרחב והמקום בספריו של ס. יזהר ‘מקדמות’ ו’צלהבים’. ירושלים: מאגנס, 2015.

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URL: http://www.magnespress.co.il/

 

Abstract

S. Yizhar (Yizhar Smilansky), one of Israel’s most prominent authors, is considered by many to be the greatest literary conqueror of the local Israeli space, of which he wrote his epic novels and short stories. With his pen Yizhar transformed space into a place which is an integral part of the world for many, a place that is theirs and to which they belong.

In 1992, after 28 years of literary silence, Yizhar published his novel Preliminaries. The following year he published Zalhavim. These two books were the opening notes for his later wave of writing which included, in addition to these novels the short stories collections Asides, and By the Sea, and the novels Lovely Malcolmia and Discovering Elijah.

In this book, Tzur follows the footsteps of Preliminaries and Zalhavim. He examines their poetics of space, focused on the home and the field, two places that Yizhar alludes to time and again. In these novels Yizhar is not the literary conqueror of Israeli space, but rather one who observes his home and environment in a complex way. The Yizharian space is revealed as a world where the private and the public are intermingled with each other side by side. This is a space where the concrete and the envisioned, the universal and the local, are combined and intertwined with one another; a very Israeli space, very local and yet at the same time a space that raises existential and political questions, the answers to which is always nuanced, always multi-dimensional.

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