London’s International Festival of Arts and Ideas

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Festival Archive

Jewish Book Week 2013

Saturday, 23 February 2013 to Sunday, 3 March 2013
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Events

02-23 Saturday

The Words and Music of Leonard Cohen: Part 1 - Words
Saturday, 23 February 2013 - 7:30pm

Leonard Cohen has had many incarnations: seen by many as a living musical legend, he has been a novelist, poet, folk singer, and Buddhist monk. Admitting to influences as wide ranging as Hebrew prayer and Lorca, Cohen himself has in turn inspired generations of artists.

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Dilemmas of Difference - German Jews, Jewish Germans
Saturday, 23 February 2013 - 7:30pm

Four generations after the Holocaust, Europe’s fastest growing Jewish community faces new challenges, from Günter Grass’s anti-Israel poem What Must Be Said, to furious debate over the legality of circumcision and assaults against Jews in the street.

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The Words and Music of Leonard Cohen: Part 2 - Music
Saturday, 23 February 2013 - 9:00pm

Leonard Cohen has had many incarnations: seen by many as a living musical legend, he has been a novelist, poet, folk singer, and Buddhist monk. Admitting to influences as wide ranging as Hebrew prayer and Lorca, Cohen himself has in turn inspired generations of artists.

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02-24 Sunday

Promiscuous - a Biography of Portnoy’s Complaint
Sunday, 24 February 2013 - 11:00am

Portnoy's Complaint provoked instant, powerful reactions when first published in 1969 and it retains an enduring hold over the imagination today.

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European Diasporists
Sunday, 24 February 2013 - 11:00am

Antony Lerman’s The Making and Unmaking of a Zionist: A Personal and Political Journey movingly describes his gradual disenchantment but continuing thoughtful engagement with Israel and Zionism.

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The Left and the Jews Since Karl Marx
Sunday, 24 February 2013 - 11:00am

Robert S. Wistrich explored the roots of left-wing attitudes to the Jews, Zionism and Israel in a masterful new study of the pathology of antisemitism.

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Live Literary Lounge
Sunday, 24 February 2013 - 12:00pm

In addition to the 70+ events at the festival, for one day only the lobby of Kings Place was transformed into a hive of experimental wordsmithery. 

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John McCarthy: You Can't Hide the Sun
Sunday, 24 February 2013 - 12:30pm

As a news journalist in the late 1980s John McCarthy’s career was abruptly cut short when, aged 29, he was captured by militiamen in Lebanon who held him captive for five and

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The Art of the Restaurateur
Sunday, 24 February 2013 - 12:30pm

Everything you ever wanted to know about the highs and lows of the restaurant business are charted in Nicholas Lander’s The Art

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My Sister Rosalind Franklin
Sunday, 24 February 2013 - 12:30pm

Rosalind Franklin was perhaps the 20th century’s most famous woman scientist. Her outstanding abilities as a crystallographer led to the key X-ray image that provided the basis for Crick and Watson’s famous cracking of the structure of DNA.

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Laurent Binet: HHhH
Sunday, 24 February 2013 - 2:00pm

Prague, 1942. Two men have been enlisted to kill the head of the Gestapo, two Czechoslovak parachutists sent on a daring mission by London to assassinate Reinhard Heydrich, the principal architect of the Final Solution.

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Naomi Alderman: The Liar’s Gospel
Sunday, 24 February 2013 - 2:00pm

Naomi Alderman, one of the most exciting writers of her generation, explores the inception of a religion in her latest novel. She unravels the story of Yehoshuah, a Jew who wanders Roman-occupied Judea giving sermons and healing the sick.

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Out of Palestine: The Lasting Influence of the British Mandate
Sunday, 24 February 2013 - 2:00pm

A journey back to British Mandate Palestine, peopled by Arabs, Jews and Britons, a intriguing world whose shadow lingers over Israel today.

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An Almost English Life
Sunday, 24 February 2013 - 3:30pm

Chair: Daniel Johnson

Miriam Gross’s life casts a fascinating insight into the British establishment from an outsider's perspective.

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The Aleppo Codex
Sunday, 24 February 2013 - 3:30pm

Chair: Deborah Kahn-Harris

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How to Make Love to your Mother-in-Law
Sunday, 24 February 2013 - 3:30pm

Man Booker Prize-winning author Howard Jacobson returned to the festival to discuss his latest novel, Zoo Times a

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René Braginsky’s Collection of Esther Scrolls
Sunday, 24 February 2013 - 5:00pm

This talk provided a rare opportunity to meet the man behind what has been called the world’s most remarkable private collection of Hebrew manuscripts.

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Love, Lies and Espionage
Sunday, 24 February 2013 - 5:00pm

Israeli secret service agents are at the heart of these new thrillers. In Yishai Sarid’s Limassol, an agent under cover poses as a novelist to ensnare the son of a Palestinian poet, a wanted terrorist suspect.

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David Miliband on Tony Judt, Europe and the Future of the Left
Sunday, 24 February 2013 - 6:30pm

The late Tony Judt was a towering historian of the 20th century and a fearless commentator on world affairs, including the demise of the Left after the collapse of the Soviet Union.  In this conversation with David Aaronovitch, former Foreign Secretary David Miliband came to Jewish Book Week to reflect on the challenges facing Europe now, Judt’s influence and the options for renewal of left-wing politics.

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Austin Ratner: The Jump Artist
Sunday, 24 February 2013 - 6:30pm

Philippe Halsman was famous for photographing the 20

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Istanbul Was A Fairy Tale
Sunday, 24 February 2013 - 6:30pm

Istanbul Was a Fairy Tale is a post-modern novel on a grand scale that follows three generations of an Istanbul Jewish family from the Ottoman Empire to the late 20th century.

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A.B. Yehoshua, The Retrospective
Sunday, 24 February 2013 - 8:00pm

One of the world’s most esteemed writers, A.B. Yehoshua, author of Mr. Mani and Friendly Fire, amongst others, returned to the festival to discuss his latest novel, The Retrospective.

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Marriage in the Suburbs
Sunday, 24 February 2013 - 8:00pm

Jewish Book Week presented two witty novels of marriage in the suburbs: in London’s Hampstead Garden Suburb, childhood sweethearts Adam and Rachel are set for a life of domestic bliss. In Chicago, Edie, matriarch of the Middlesteins, is eating herself to death and her family can’t stop her.

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Hungry Hearts: Silent Film with Live Music Accompaniment
Sunday, 24 February 2013 - 9:30pm

Jewish Book Week audience enjoyed a silent melodrama with a brand new commissioned score performed live.

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02-25 Monday

The Elusive Jewishness of J Robert Oppenheimer
Monday, 25 February 2013 - 1:00pm

“Father of the atom bomb” J. Robert Oppenheimer is among the most contentious figures of the 20th century.

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FILM $9.99
Monday, 25 February 2013 - 3:00pm

Based on the stories of iconic Israeli short story writer, Etgar Keret and adapted for the screen by the writer and director Tatia Rosenthal, $9.99 is a stop-motion animated feature set in a Sydney apartment complex.

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Good Living Street
Monday, 25 February 2013 - 5:30pm

Tim Bonyhady’s family were leading patrons of the arts in fin-de-siecle Vienna. Gustav Klimt painted his great-grandmother’s portrait -- now the only Klimt in Britain’s National Gallery -- Josef Hoffmann designed their lavish residence, and Gustav and Alma Mahler were close acquaintances.

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Simon Schama’s History of the Jews
Monday, 25 February 2013 - 7:00pm

The Story of the Jews and The Fate of the World is expected to be one of the most discussed books of 2013. Accompanied by a major BBC television series, it is a landmark history of a culture, a people, a world – from the time of Moses to our own.

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The Chief Rabbi’s 22 years of writing and reading
Monday, 25 February 2013 - 8:30pm

The George Webber Memorial Lecture

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02-26 Tuesday

From Haggadot to Hogwarts - A Walk Around King’s Cross
Tuesday, 26 February 2013 - 11:00am

This excursion to showed some of the world's most important Hebrew manuscripts, housed in the British Library. Ilana Tahan introduced treasures including the 14th century Golden Haggadah from Catalonia, Spain, and the 1482 Lisbon Bible.  Rachel Kolsky then lead a gentle walk to explore the renova

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We Are Here: Voices from Lithuania
Tuesday, 26 February 2013 - 1:00pm

American journalist Ellen Cassedy travelled to the land of her forbears, and found herself face to face with memory and moral dilemmas. From a modest quest to learn Yiddish in Vilnius, her personal journey expanded.

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Writing Workshop: Can You Keep a Secret? Writing the Unspoken in Fiction and Memoir
Tuesday, 26 February 2013 - 3:00pm

A practical creative writing workshop on the importance of the hidden and unspoken in fiction and memoir. Secrets and secret places create mystery and tension, as well as good ingredients for story and character development.

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The People of Forever Are Not Afraid
Tuesday, 26 February 2013 - 5:30pm

Shani Boianjiu’s debut novel is a disconcerting and often surreal coming of age story set in the Israeli army. Written by a 25-year old Israeli dubbed as a hot new literary talent, it introduces three girl friends conscripted into endless boredom and danger, entering adulthood with guns.

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Parting Ways: Jewishness and the Critique of Zionism
Tuesday, 26 February 2013 - 7:00pm

Judith Butler’s Parting Ways: Jewishness and the Critique of Zionism recovers Jewish philosophical traditions to reinvigorate the discussion of co-habitation in Israel and Palestine, drawing on a tradition of principled non-violence.

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The Holocaust in Italian Culture
Tuesday, 26 February 2013 - 7:00pm

Fascist Italy was the model for Nazi Germany, and Mussolini Hitler’s prime World War Two ally. Italy was a theatre of war and a victim of Nazi persecution after 1943 as resistance, collaboration and civil war raged. Many thousands were deported to concentration camps across Europe.

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Carlo Ginzburg: Jews and Christians - A Story of Ambivalence
Tuesday, 26 February 2013 - 8:30pm

Carlo Ginzburg, the pioneer of “micro-history”, is considered by many to be the outstanding European historian of his generation.  Best known for The Cheese and the Worms: The Cosmos of a Sixteenth-Century Miller, an account of a villager burned at the stake for heresy.

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Fania Oz-Salzberger: Textline, Not Bloodline How did the Jews Remain Jews?
Tuesday, 26 February 2013 - 8:30pm

Why are words so important to so many Jews? Historian Fania Oz-Salzberger discusses Jews and Words, which she wrote together with her father, the celebrated Israeli novelist Amos Oz. They roam the gamut of Jewish history to explain the integral relationship of Jews and words.

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02-27 Wednesday

Writing Workshop: Scripts and Prose
Wednesday, 27 February 2013 - 3:00pm

They're not always such different beasts, a screenplay and a novel, but usually they are.  What are the differences a writer must account for, in writing for the collaborative medium of film as against the solo pursuit of the novel?  

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Edith Pearlman: The Art of the Short Story
Wednesday, 27 February 2013 - 7:00pm

Chair: Mekella Broomberg

“Edith Pearlman has been a secret much too long,” says author Ann Patchett of this Boston-based writer of fiction and non-fiction, whose work, while prolific and garlanded, remains relatively unknown.

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The Prime Ministers
Wednesday, 27 February 2013 - 7:00pm

The Prime Ministers has been called “the ultimate insider’s account” of politics and decision-making by five Israeli prime ministers since the founding of the state in 1948.

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Nick Robinson: Live From Downing Street
Wednesday, 27 February 2013 - 7:00pm

Live from Downing Street is a personal account of the long and rocky relationship between politicians and broadcasters, by the only person to have been Political Editor of both ITV News and BBC News.

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Simon Schama’s History of the Jews
Wednesday, 27 February 2013 - 7:15pm
Due to popular demand, Schama returned for a second visit to Jewish Book Week 2013, for a conversation with Ian Black, The Guardian's Middle East editor, about his book and TV series. This event was not recorded.

 

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And Europe Will Be Stunned - Poland and the Loss or Return of the Jews
Wednesday, 27 February 2013 - 7:30pm

With the support of the Polish Cultural Institute, London, The Museum of the History of Polish Jews and Artangel. Event photos (c) Elzbieta Piekacz, courtesy of the Polish Cultural Institute, London. 

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Liverpool 27th February at 8pm - JBW On Tour - The Spy Who Loved
Wednesday, 27 February 2013 - 8:00pm

Clare Mulley gave a talk about her novel The Spy Who Loved, which tells the story of the secrets and lives of Christine Granville, Britain's first female Special Agent of World War Two. 

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Jewish Quarterly -Wingate Prize for Jewish Literature
Wednesday, 27 February 2013 - 8:30pm

The judges of the 2013 prize, Diana Reich, Artistic Director of Charleston Festivals; Hephzibah Anderson, book columnist and author; Clive Lawton, educator, writer and broadcaster;  Sam Leith, journalist and author, discussed and presented the best in Jewish fic

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The Inquisitor’s Diary
Wednesday, 27 February 2013 - 8:30pm

Mexico City, 1649. The Spanish Inquisition holds sway over the capital and at its core lies one ambition: the submission of all to the Catholic faith.

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02-28 Thursday

Yudit Kiss: The Summer My Father Died
Thursday, 28 February 2013 - 1:00pm

Yudit Kiss left Hungary as an adult. Her poignant memoir The Summer My Father Died captures her awakening to her own Jewish origins and the shortcomings of Communism as her father, a party official, is dying in Budapest.

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FILM Grace Paley: Collected Shorts
Thursday, 28 February 2013 - 3:00pm

Although her writing output was modest during her 84 years –just three volumes of short stories- Grace Paley  was a finalist for both the Pulitzer Prize and the National Book Award.

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The Dead Sea Scrolls and the Beginnings of Midrash
Thursday, 28 February 2013 - 5:30pm

Chair: Maureen Kendler

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Diamond Street - The Hidden World of Hatton Garden
Thursday, 28 February 2013 - 7:00pm

Rachel Lichtenstein came to Jewish Book Week to uncover the world of Hatton Garden, “one of the most secret streets in England”.

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Helga’s Diary
Thursday, 28 February 2013 - 7:00pm

One year into the Nazi occupation of Prague, 11 year-old Helga Weiss started a diary. Deportations began and friends and family disappeared. She wrote through three years of incarceration in Terezin until her father was sent to Auschwitz. Helga and her mother followed.

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Fania Oz-Salzberger: How Jewish is Contemporary Hebrew?
Thursday, 28 February 2013 - 7:00pm

Modern Hebrew is a unique, self-conscious, man-made hybrid that became a living, biting, and rather unruly language, happily cavorting with foreign tongues, these days mainly English, and toying with colloquialism and slang.

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Edmund de Waal: The Exiles Return
Thursday, 28 February 2013 - 8:30pm

The ceramicist and acclaimed author of The Hare With The Amber Eyes turns a new page in his family’s story. He came to Jewish Book Week to present his grandmother’s novel, The Exiles Return. Elisabeth de Waal’s book follows four exiles as they return to Vienna in the early 1950s,

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From The Feminine Mystique to Fifty Shades - 50 Years On
Thursday, 28 February 2013 - 8:30pm

“The book that pulled the trigger on history”, The Feminine Mystique created an instant impact on its pu

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What Do You Mean, “Modern Orthodox”?
Thursday, 28 February 2013 - 8:30pm

As the current chief rabbi, Lord Sacks, approached retirement, and a new appointment is sought, three experts considered the inherent tensions of modern orthodox Jewish practice in Britain and beyond. What place can be found for women, for religious pluralism, for critical scholarship?

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03-1 Friday

What to Read in 2013: Classics by Marcel Proust and Giorgio Bassani
Friday, 1 March 2013 - 1:00pm

To mark the launch of ongoing book discussions on this website, we dedicate an hour to ideas for neglected classics to read in 2013.

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03-2 Saturday

Israeli TV drama takes the world by storm
Saturday, 2 March 2013 - 7:30pm

Viewers the world over have been glued to terrorism drama Homeland, an American version of Prisoners of War, which was originally made for home consumption in Israel.

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Adrienne Rich: Poetry and Politics
Saturday, 2 March 2013 - 7:30pm

Adrienne Rich was one of the most revered and influential American poets of the last century. In over 30 books of poetry and essays she championed the indivisibility of art and politics, offering a candid and brave articulation of feminism, sexuality, Jewish identity and civil rights.

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Six-Word Memoirs
Saturday, 2 March 2013 - 9:00pm

Hemingway’s legendary challenge to write a novel in six words—"For sale: baby shoes, never worn"— has unintentionally created one of the hottest modern literary trends.

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03-3 Sunday

Traces of the Past
Sunday, 3 March 2013 - 11:00am

How do a historian and a literary critic recreate the pasts of people they have never met, with little more than papers and a few objects to go on? Orlando Figes and Nancy K.

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Stephan Mendel-Enk: Oh Sweden! Oh Israel!
Sunday, 3 March 2013 - 11:00am

Around the time of Jacob's bar mitzvah, his mother leaves his father for another man, a Swedish goy. It's 1987, the first Intifada is about to break out in Israel, and the Jews of Gothenburg are under a certain amount of strain.

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The Art and Photography of Marianne Breslauer
Sunday, 3 March 2013 - 11:00am

Marianne Breslauer was a young photographer in Weimar Germany who captured the essence of life in an era coming to a close.

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Sayed Kashua: Exposure
Sunday, 3 March 2013 - 12:30pm

One of the most important contemporary writers in the Hebrew language, Sayed Kashua portrays Palestinian Israelis with complex and conflicted identities. He has a wry wisdom that he made his own in two novels and a popular Israeli TV sitcom, Arab Labor.

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Eilat Negev and Yehuda Koren: Giants
Sunday, 3 March 2013 - 12:30pm

Giants The Seven Dwarfs of Auschwitz is an astonishing story of survival against the odds.

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Gil Cohen-Magen: Inside the Courts of the Hassidim
Sunday, 3 March 2013 - 12:30pm

Gil Cohen-Magen spent a decade getting to know the closed world of Israel’s ultra-orthodox, persuading community elders to let him record their daily lives, family ceremonies and religious rituals in a project that changed his own perceptions.

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Iosi Havilio: Open Door
Sunday, 3 March 2013 - 2:00pm

An acclaimed new literary voice from Argentina, Iosi Havilio came to Jewish Book Week to discuss his first novel Open Door, an atmospheric tale of solitude that has been likened to Albert Camus’s L’Etranger.

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The 99% -The Social Justice Movement in Israel
Sunday, 3 March 2013 - 2:00pm

18 months ago the Social Justice Movement started in Israel, also known as ‘J14’ after the date of its inception, July 14th.

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The Examined Life
Sunday, 3 March 2013 - 2:00pm

The Examined Life is a series of short dramatic tales from the caseload of London psychoanalyst Stephen Grosz. It charts life’s trajectory from birth to death and aims to answer the questions that compel and disturb us most about love and loss, parents and children, work and change.

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Winter Games
Sunday, 3 March 2013 - 3:30pm

Winter Games is a novel with echoes of the Mitfords, with a dark secret at its heart.

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Does Your Rabbi Know You’re Here?
Sunday, 3 March 2013 - 3:30pm

Two writers upset the widely held belief that Jews and sport don’t mix: Anthony Clavane celebrates the unsung pioneers who played a key role in English football’s transformation from working-class pursuit to global entertainment industry, and David Dee shows the impact British Jews have had on sp

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Nikolaus Pevsner The Life
Sunday, 3 March 2013 - 3:30pm

Nikolaus Pevsner, critic and champion of Modernism, was considered by many to be the foremost authority on the art and architecture of England, with his 46 books on the subject simply known as “Pevsner”.

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Divine Women in Judaism and the Ancient World
Sunday, 3 March 2013 - 5:00pm

Bettany Hughes’ BBC2 documentary, Divine Women examined the pivotal role of goddesses and women in many religions and asked why these stories have been nearly invisible in the official histories of so many cultures.

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Nights Out in Cosmopolitan London
Sunday, 3 March 2013 - 5:00pm

In the years up to World War Two, Soho was transformed from a dark proletarian quarter into a mecca of shopping, restaurants and night-life entertainments.

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Deborah Levy “Swimming Home”
Sunday, 3 March 2013 - 5:00pm

As he arrives with his family at the villa in the hills above Nice, Joe sees a body in the swimming pool. But the girl is very much alive, walking naked out of the water and into the heart of their holiday. Why is she there? What does she want from them all?

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Frederic Raphael: Distant Intimacy
Sunday, 3 March 2013 - 6:30pm

Frederic Raphael discussed with Mark Glanville two recent books that illustrate his range: A Jew Among Romans, The Life and Legacy of Flavius Josephus, and Distant Intimacy, a fat volume of email correspondence with Chicago-based writer and critic Joseph Epstein, whom he has nev

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K A Novel of Brazil's "Disappeared"
Sunday, 3 March 2013 - 6:30pm

In K a father looks for his disappeared daughter during the military dictatorship in Brazil. K, a famous Yiddish writer, discovers how the repressive system works and how little he knew of his daughter’s clandestine political life.

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JDOV: Jewish Dreams, Observations, Visions
Sunday, 3 March 2013 - 6:30pm

Ever wondered what it would be like if you crossed Jewish Book Week with TED, the popular conference which asks inspiring speakers to give "the talk of their life"?

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Thomas Heatherwick - Making
Sunday, 3 March 2013 - 8:00pm

Visionary designer Thomas Heatherwick has been called the “Leonardo da Vinci of our times”.

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Walking with the Light
Sunday, 3 March 2013 - 8:00pm

North London Rabbi Jonathan Wittenberg came to Jewish Book Week to talk about his journey from the site of his grandfather’s erstwhile German synagogue to his own.

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Jewish Book Week 2013
Sunday, 3 March 2013 - 11:45pm

Sunday 3 March was the final day of Jewish Book Week 2013. The main festival ran from 23 February to 3 March at Kings Place. More than 110 challenging and entertaining speakers took part in 75 sessions, presenting arguments and many different points of view. 

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03-10 Sunday

Jimmy Coates at Little Bookniks
Sunday, 10 March 2013 - 12:15pm

Joe Craig is the creator of the Jimmy Coates series featuring a twelve-year-old boy who discovers one day that he is only 38% human. Created by a government-sponsored lab to gro into the ultimate secret agent when he turns 18, Jimmy has dicovered his powers much earlier.

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JBW 2013 On Tour in Glasgow: Yehuda Koren and Eilat Negev
Sunday, 10 March 2013 - 2:00pm

At an event organised by Jewish Arts and Garnethill Synagogue with Jewish Book Week, author J David Simons discussed his novels set in the Glasgow Jewish community,

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The Diary of Anne Frank at Little Bookniks
Sunday, 10 March 2013 - 3:30pm

Anne Frank's Diary continues to attract readers in over 60 languages; the latest version is in the form of an app for iPad. Anne Frank also wrote some recently published short stories. In this workshop, discover the new app and a new approach to the diary with Irene Wise. 

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The Klezmer Klub at Little Bookniks
Sunday, 10 March 2013 - 4:00pm

We were swept off our feet by the 6-piece band! Transporting us 100 years back in time to London's East End, we enjoyed stories and music about the hardship and joy of life in Yiddish London. 

 

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03-11 Monday

JBW 2013 On Tour in Leeds: Ellen Cassedy
Monday, 11 March 2013 - 8:00pm

Ellen Cassedy spoke about her book, We Are Here: Memories of the Lithuanian Holocaust, at a joint meeting of The Jewish Historical Society Leeds and The United Hebrew Congregation Leeds (UHC).

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Video

 
David Grossman speaks with Mark Lawson at a special out-of-fesitval event.