The Némirovsky Question
Irène Némirovsky was a literary superstar of the 1920s and 1930s but a controversial figure in her lifetime, seen by some as a self-hating Jew. Born in Tsarist Russia, she fled to France, becoming an overnight sensation with the publication of David Golder. Her novel Suite Française was published in 2004 to posthumous fame. Harvard Professor Susan Suleiman elucidates Némirovsky’s genius in the context of her life and death.
Susan Rubin Suleiman is the C. Douglas Dillon Research Professor of the Civilization of France and Professor of Comparative Literature at Harvard. She is currently Acting Chair of Romance Language and Literatures. Born in Budapest, she is the recipient of many awards and fellowships and the author of numerous publications and books, including Crises of Memory and the Second World War.